Chiu YM, Hsu HL, Coull BA, Bellinger DC, Kloog I, Schwartz J, Wright RO, Wright RJ. Prenatal particulate air pollution and neurodevelopment in urban children: Examining sensitive windows and sex-specific associations. Environ Int. 2015 Nov 28;87:56-65.

Environ Int. 2015 Nov 28;87:56-65. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2015.11.010. [Epub ahead of print]

Prenatal particulate air pollution and neurodevelopment in urban children: Examining sensitive windows and sex-specific associations.

Chiu YM(1), Hsu HL(2), Coull BA(3), Bellinger DC(4), Kloog I(5), Schwartz J(6), Wright RO(7), Wright RJ(8).

Author information:
(1)Kravis Children's Hospital, Department of Pediatrics, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, USA; Department of Preventive Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, USA.
(2)Department of Preventive Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, USA.
(3)Department of Biostatistics, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; Department of Environmental Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.
(4)Department of Environmental Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; Department of Neurology Research, Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
(5)Department of Geography and Environmental Development, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel.
(6)Department of Environmental Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.
(7)Department of Preventive Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, USA; The Mindich Child Health & Development Institute, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, USA.
(8)Kravis Children's Hospital, Department of Pediatrics, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, USA; The Mindich Child Health & Development Institute, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, USA. Electronic address: rosalind.wright@mssm.edu.

BACKGROUND: Brain growth and structural organization occurs in stages beginning prenatally. Toxicants may impact neurodevelopment differently dependent upon exposure timing and fetal sex.

OBJECTIVES: We implemented innovative methodology to identify sensitive windows for the associations between prenatal particulate matter with diameter≤2.5μm (PM2.5) and children's neurodevelopment.

METHODS: We assessed 267 full-term urban children's prenatal daily PM2.5 exposure using a validated satellite-based spatio-temporally resolved prediction model. Outcomes included IQ (WISC-IV), attention (omission errors [OEs], commission errors [CEs], hit reaction time [HRT], and HRT standard error [HRT-SE] on the Conners' CPT-II), and memory (general memory [GM] index and its components - verbal [VEM] and visual [VIM] memory, and attention-concentration [AC] indices on the WRAML-2) assessed at age 6.5±0.98years. To identify the role of exposure timing, we used distributed lag models to examine associations between weekly prenatal PM2.5 exposure and neurodevelopment. Sex-specific associations were also examined.

RESULTS: Mothers were primarily minorities (60% Hispanic, 25% black); 69% had ≤12years of education. Adjusting for maternal age, education, race, and smoking, we found associations between higher PM2.5 levels at 31-38weeks with lower IQ, at 20-26weeks gestation with increased OEs, at 32-36weeks with slower HRT, and at 22-40weeks with increased HRT-SE among boys, while significant associations were found in memory domains in girls (higher PM2.5 exposure at 18-26weeks with reduced VIM, at 12-20weeks with reduced GM).

CONCLUSIONS: Increased PM2.5 exposure in specific prenatal windows may be associated with poorer function across memory and attention domains with variable associations based on sex. Refined determination of time window- and sex-specific associations may enhance insight into underlying mechanisms and identification of vulnerable subgroups.

Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID: 26641520  [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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