Genetic and epigenetic influence on the response to environmental particulate matter.
ABSTRACT: Ambient air pollution, including particulate matter (PM) and gaseous pollutants, represents important environmental exposures that adversely affect human health. Because of their heritable and reversible nature, epigenetic modifications provide a plausible link between the environment and alterations in gene expression that might lead to disease. Epidemiologic evidence supports that environmental exposures in childhood affect susceptibility to disease later in life, supporting the belief that epigenetic changes can affect ongoing development and promote disease long after the environmental exposure has ceased. Indeed, allergic disorders often have their roots in early childhood, and early exposure to PM has been strongly associated with the subsequent development of asthma. The purpose of this review is to summarize recent findings on the genetic and epigenetic regulation of responses to ambient air pollutants, specifically respirable PM, and their association with the development of allergic disorders. Understanding these epigenetic biomarkers and how they integrate with genetic influences to translate the biologic effect of particulate exposure is critical to developing novel preventative and therapeutic strategies for allergic disorders.
Project description:The effects of exposure to specific components of ambient fine particulate matter (PM(2.5)), including metals and elemental carbon (EC), have not been fully characterized in young children.To compare temporal associations among PM(2.5); individual metal constituents of ambient PM(2.5), including nickel (Ni), vanadium (V), and zinc (Zn); and EC and longitudinal reports of respiratory symptoms through 24 months of age.Study participants were selected from the Columbia Center for Children's Environmental Health birth cohort recruited in New York City between 1998 and 2006. Respiratory symptom data were collected by questionnaire every 3 months through 24 months of age. Ambient pollutant data were obtained from state-operated stationary monitoring sites located within the study area. For each subject, 3-month average inverse-distance weighted concentrations of Ni, V, Zn, EC, and PM(2.5) were calculated for each symptom-reporting period based on the questionnaire date and the preceding 3 months. Associations between pollutants and symptoms were characterized using generalized additive mixed effects models, adjusting for sex, ethnicity, environmental tobacco smoke exposure, and calendar time.Increases in ambient Ni and V concentrations were associated significantly with increased probability of wheeze. Increases in EC were associated significantly with cough during the cold/flu season. Total PM(2.5) was not associated with wheeze or cough.These results suggest that exposure to ambient metals and EC from heating oil and/or traffic at levels characteristic of urban environments may be associated with respiratory symptoms among very young children.
Project description:In the previous studies regarding the effects of exposure to ambient air pollution on biological markers and/or behavior of animals, the gaseous pollutants are not separated from the particulate matter (PM). Hence the synergetic effect of gaseous pollutants and PM was not considered. In this regard, current study was aimed to devolve a new method for separation of PM from gaseous pollutants. Also, the effect of exposure to fine particulate matter (PM2.5) on the Alzheimer and depressive cognitive-like behaviors in rats after 3 and 6 months were investigated. Three chambers were designed including exposure group 1 (PM2.5 plus gaseous pollutants alone), exposure group 2 (gaseous pollutants alone) and control group (clean air). Exposure time was 5 h per day (9.00 a.m.-2.00 p.m.) for 4 days per week. The concentration of PM2.5 and gaseous pollutants (O3, NO2, and SO2) were monitored in the exposure hours, continuously. Concentration of PM2.5 by beta attenuation method and concentration of O3, NO2, and SO2 by UV fluorescence was monitored. Also, the concentration of metals including Al, Cr, Mn, Pb, Cd, Ni, Fe, and Cu and 16-polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) bound PM2.5 by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) were analyzed, respectively. Cognitive-like behavior related to Alzheimer and depressive behaviors were determined by Y maze and Force swimming. The concentration of PM2.5 in the 3 and 6 months exposure was higher than WHO guideline, significantly (p-value <0.05). The concentration of O3, NO2 and SO2 in the 3 and 6 months exposure was lower than WHO guideline, significantly (p-value <0.05). The order of metals in the PM2.5 according to mean concentration Al > Ca > Cu > Cd > Na > Fe > Cr > Ni > Mn > Pb. Also, the sum concentration of 16-PAHs in the PM2.5 in the 3 and 6 months exposure was 45.7 ± 37.15 ng/m3 and 30.04 ± 25.27 ng/m3, respectively. Exposure to PM2.5 cannot significantly increase Alzheimer and depressive cognitive-like behaviors in the rats. Also, a significant difference between male and female in Alzheimer and depressive cognitive-like behaviors not observed. •A new method for separation of PM2.5 from other PM in the ambient air by ECO-PM sampler was presented.•A new method for separation of PM2.5 from gaseous pollutants in the ambient air by HEPA filter and active carbon was presented.•Tow exposure groups including exposure 1: PM2.5 plus gaseous pollutants and exposure 2: gaseous pollutants only were designed for increased accuracy of the in-vivo study.•Exposure to PM2.5 cannot cause significant increased Alzheimer and depressive cognitive-like behaviors in the rats.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Progress has been made recently in estimating ambient PM(2.5) (particulate matter with aerodynamic diameter < 2.5 ?m) and ozone concentrations using various data sources and advanced modeling techniques, which resulted in gridded surfaces. However, epidemiologic and health impact studies often require population exposures to ambient air pollutants to be presented at an appropriate census geographic unit (CGU), where health data are usually available to maintain confidentiality of individual health data. We aim to generate estimates of population exposures to ambient PM(2.5) and ozone for U.S. CGUs. METHODS: We converted 2001-2006 gridded data, generated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for CDC's (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Environmental Public Health Tracking Network (EPHTN), to census block group (BG) based on spatial proximities between BG and its four nearest grids. We used a bottom-up (fine to coarse) strategy to generate population exposure estimates for larger CGUs by aggregating BG estimates weighted by population distribution. RESULTS: The BG daily estimates were comparable to monitoring data. On average, the estimates deviated by 2 ?g/m(3) (for PM(2.5)) and 3 ppb (for ozone) from their corresponding observed values. Population exposures to ambient PM(2.5) and ozone varied greatly across the U.S. In 2006, estimates for daily potential population exposure to ambient PM(2.5) in west coast states, the northwest and a few areas in the east and estimates for daily potential population exposure to ambient ozone in most of California and a few areas in the east/southeast exceeded the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for at least 7 days. CONCLUSIONS: These estimates may be useful in assessing health impacts through linkage studies and in communicating with the public and policy makers for potential intervention.
Project description:Inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS; encoded by nitric oxide synthase isoform 2 [NOS2]) is the major enzyme for nitric oxide synthesis in airways. As such, measurement of fractional concentration of exhaled nitric oxide (Feno) provides an in vivo assessment of iNOS activity. Short-term exposure to air pollution, haplotypes, and DNA methylation in the NOS2 promoter has been associated independently with iNOS expression, Feno levels, or both.We aimed to examine the effects of ambient air pollutants, NOS2 promoter haplotypes, and NOS2 promoter methylation on Feno levels in children.We selected 940 participants in the Children's Health Study who provided buccal samples and had undergone Feno measurement on the same day. DNA methylation was measured with a bisulfite-PCR Pyrosequencing assay. Seven single nucleotide polymorphisms captured the haplotype diversity in the NOS2 promoter. Average particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter of 2.5 ?m or less (PM(2.5)) and 10 ?m (PM(10)) or less and ozone and nitrogen dioxide levels 7 days before Feno measurement were estimated based on air pollution data obtained at central monitoring sites.We found interrelated effects of PM(2.5), NOS2 promoter haplotypes, and iNOS methylation on Feno levels. Increased 7-day average PM(2.5) exposure was associated with lower iNOS methylation (P = .01). NOS2 promoter haplotypes were globally associated with NOS2 promoter methylation (P = 6.2 × 10(-8)). There was interaction among 1 common promoter haplotype, iNOS methylation level, and PM(2.5) exposure on Feno levels (P(interaction) = .00007).Promoter variants in NOS2 and short-term PM(2.5) exposure affect iNOS methylation. This is one of the first studies showing contributions of genetic and epigenetic variations in air pollution-mediated phenotype expression.
Project description:The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) is a ligand-activated transcription factor regulating the expression of genes, for instance encoding the monooxygenases cytochrome P450 (CYP) 1A1 and CYP1A2, which are important enzymes in metabolism of xenobiotics. The AHR is activated upon binding of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), persistent organic pollutants (POPs), and related ubiquitous environmental chemicals, to mediate their biological and toxic effects. In addition, several endogenous and natural compounds can bind to AHR, thereby modulating a variety of physiological processes. In recent years, ambient particulate matter (PM) associated with traffic related air pollution (TRAP) has been found to contain significant amounts of PAHs. PM containing PAHs are of increasing concern as a class of agonists, which can activate the AHR. Several reports show that PM and AHR-mediated induction of CYP1A1 results in excessive generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), causing oxidative stress. Furthermore, exposure to PM and PAHs induce inflammatory responses and may lead to chronic inflammatory diseases, including asthma, cardiovascular diseases, and increased cancer risk. In this review, we summarize findings showing the critical role that the AHR plays in mediating effects of environmental pollutants and stressors, which pose a risk of impacting the environment and human health.
Project description:Particulate matter (PM) air pollution is increasingly recognized as an important and modifiable risk factor for adverse health outcomes including cardiovascular disease (CVD). However, there are still gaps regarding large population risk assessment. Results from the nationwide Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) were used along with air quality monitoring measurements to implement a systematic evaluation of PM-related CVD risks at the national and regional scales. CVD status and individual-level risk factors were collected from more than 500,000 BRFSS respondents across 2,231 contiguous U.S. counties for 2007 and 2009. Chronic exposures to PM pollutants were estimated with spatial modeling from measurement data. CVD outcomes attributable to PM pollutants were assessed by mixed-effects logistic regression and latent class regression (LCR), with adjustment for multicausality. There were positive associations between CVD and PM after accounting for competing risk factors: the multivariable-adjusted odds for the multiplicity of CVD outcomes increased by 1.32 (95% confidence interval: 1.23-1.43) and 1.15 (1.07-1.22) times per 10 µg/m(3) increase in PM(2.5) and PM(10) respectively in the LCR analyses. After controlling for spatial confounding, there were moderate estimated effects of PM exposure on multiple cardiovascular manifestations. These results suggest that chronic exposures to ambient particulates are important environmental risk factors for cardiovascular morbidity.
Project description:Particulate matter (PM) air pollution has been associated with an increase in the incidence of chronic allergic diseases; however, the mechanisms underlying the effect of exposure to natural ambient air pollution in chronic allergic diseases have not been fully elucidated. In the present study, we aimed to investigate the cellular responses induced by exposure to natural ambient air pollution, employing a mouse model of chronic allergy. The results indicated that exposure to ambient air pollution significantly increased the number of eosinophils in the nasal mucosa. The modulation of gene expression profile identified a set of regulated genes, and the Triggering Receptor Expressed on Myeloid cells1(TREM1) signaling canonical pathway was increased after exposure to ambient air pollution. In vitro, PM2.5 increased Nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein 1 (Nod1) and nuclear factor (NF)-κB signaling pathway activation in A549 and HEK293 cell cultures. These results suggest a novel mechanism by which, PM2.5 in ambient air pollution may stimulate the innate immune system through the PM2.5-Nod1-NF-κB axis in chronic allergic disease.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Children are susceptible to environmental contaminants and are at risk of developing diseases, more so if the exposure begins at an early age. Epidemiological studies have postulated the hypothesis of the fetal origin of disease, which is mediated by epigenetic changes. Epigenetic marks are inheritable; they modulate the gene expression and can affect human health due to the presence of environmental factors. OBJECTIVE:This review focuses on DNA-methylation and its association with environmental-related diseases in children. METHODS:A search for studies related to DNA-methylation in children by pre- or post-natal environmental exposures was conducted, and those studies with appropriate designs and statistical analyses and evaluations of the exposure were selected. FINDINGS:Prenatal and early life environmental factors, from diet to exposure to pollutants, have been associated with epigenetic changes, specifically DNA-methylation. Thus, maternal nutrition and smoking and exposure to air particulate matter, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, arsenic, heavy metals, persistent organic pollutants, and some endocrine disrupters during pregnancy have been associated with genomic and gene-specific newborns' DNA-methylation changes that have shown in some cases sex-specific patterns. In addition, these maternal factors may deregulate the placental DNA-methylation balance and could induce a fetal reprogramming and later-in-life diseases. CONCLUSIONS:Exposure to environmental pollutants during prenatal and early life can trigger epigenetic imbalances and eventually the development of diseases in children. The integration of epigenetic data should be considered in future risk assessments.
Project description:The incidence of neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative diseases worldwide has dramatically increased over the last decades. Although the aetiology remains uncertain, evidence is now growing that exposure to persistent organic pollutants during sensitive neurodevelopmental periods such as early life may be a strong risk factor, predisposing the individual to disease development later in life. Epidemiological studies have associated environmentally persistent organic pollutant exposure to brain disorders including neuropathies, cognitive, motor, and sensory impairments; neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); and neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). In many ways, this expands the classical "Developmental Origins of Health and Disease" paradigm to include exposure to pollutants. This model has been refined over the years to give the current "three-hit" model that considers the individual's genetic factors as a first "hit." It has an immediate interaction with the early-life exposome (including persistent organic pollutants) that can be considered to be a second "hit." Together, these first two "hits" produce a quiescent or latent phenotype, most probably encoded in the epigenome, which has become susceptible to a third environmental "hit" in later life. It is only after the third "hit" that the increased risk of disease symptoms is crystallised. However, if the individual is exposed to a different environment in later life, they would be expected to remain healthy. In this review, we examine the effect of exposure to persistent organic pollutants and particulate matters in early life and the relationship to subsequent neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders. The roles of those environmental factors which may affect epigenetic DNA methylation and therefore influence normal neurodevelopment are then evaluated.
Project description:There is now a large body of literature supporting a linkage between exposure to air pollutants and asthma morbidity. However, the extent and significance of this relationship varies considerably between pollutants, location, scale of analysis, and analysis methods. Our primary goal is to evaluate the relationship between asthma hospitalizations, levels of ambient air pollution, and weather conditions in Los Angeles (LA) County, California, an area with a historical record of heavy air pollution. County-wide measures of carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen dioxide (NO(2)), ozone (O(3)), particulate matter<10 ?m (PM(10)), particulate matter<2.5 ?m (PM(2.5)), maximum temperature, and relative humidity were collected for all months from 2001 to 2008. We then related these variables to monthly asthma hospitalization rates using Bayesian regression models with temporal random effects. We evaluated model performance using a goodness of fit criterion and predictive ability. Asthma hospitalization rates in LA County decreased between 2001 and 2008. Traffic-related pollutants, CO and NO(2), were significant and positively correlated with asthma hospitalizations. PM(2.5) also had a positive, significant association with asthma hospitalizations. PM(10), relative humidity, and maximum temperature produced mixed results, whereas O(3) was non-significant in all models. Inclusion of temporal random effects satisfies statistical model assumptions, improves model fit, and yields increased predictive accuracy and precision compared to their non-temporal counterparts. Generally, pollution levels and asthma hospitalizations decreased during the 9 year study period. Our findings also indicate that after accounting for seasonality in the data, asthma hospitalization rate has a significant positive relationship with ambient levels of CO, NO(2), and PM(2.5).