Few studies have addressed associations between traffic-related air pollution and respiratory disease in young children. The present authors assessed the development of asthmatic/allergic symptoms and respiratory infections during the first 4 yrs of life in a birth cohort study (n=∼4,000). Outdoor concentrations of traffic-related air pollutants (nitrogen dioxide PM2.5, particles with a 50% cut-off aerodynamic diameter of 2.5 μm and soot) were assigned to birthplace home addresses with a land-use regression model. They were linked by logistic regression to questionnaire data on doctor-diagnosed asthma, bronchitis, influenza and eczema and to self-reported wheeze, dry night-time cough, ear/nose/ throat infections and skin rash. Total and specific immunoglobulin (Ig)E to common allergens were measured in a subgroup (n=713). Adjusted odds ratios (95% confidence intervals) per interquartile pollution range were elevated for wheeze (1.2 (1.0-1.4) for soot), doctor-diagnosed asthma (1.3 (1.0-1.7)), ear/nose/throat infections (1.2 (1.0-1.3)) and flu/serious colds (1.2 (1.0-1.4)). No consistent associations were observed for other end-points. Positive associations between air pollution and specific sensitisation to common food allergens (1.6 (1.2-2.2) for soot), but not total IgE, were found in the subgroup with IgE measurements. Traffic-related pollution was associated with, respiratory infections and some measures of asthma and allergy during the first 4 yrs of life. Copyright

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doi.org/10.1183/09031936.00083406, hdl.handle.net/1765/36471
The European Respiratory Journal
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Brauer, M., Hoek, G., Smit, H., de Jongste, J., Gerritsen, J., Postma, D., … Brunekreef, B. (2007). Air pollution and development of asthma, allergy and infections in a birth cohort. The European Respiratory Journal, 29(5), 879–888. doi:10.1183/09031936.00083406