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Reviews on Environmental Health

Editor-in-Chief: Carpenter, David O. / Sly, Peter

Editorial Board Member: Brugge, Doug / Diaz-Barriga, Fernando / Edwards, John W. / Field, R.William / Hales, Simon / Horowitz, Michal / Maibach, H.I. / Shaw, Susan / Stein, Renato / Tao, Shu / Tchounwou, Paul B.

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A community participatory study of cardiovascular health and exposure to near-highway air pollution: study design and methods

1, 2 / Allison P. Patton3 / Kevin Lane4 / M. Barton Laws5 / Aaron Marden6 / Edna Carrasco7 / John Spengler2 / Mkaya Mwamburi6 / Wig Zamore8 / John L. Durant3 / 6

1Institute of Public Health, Georgia State University, P.O. Box 3995, Atlanta, GA 30302-3995, USA

2Department of Environmental Health, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA

3Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tufts University School of Engineering, Medford, MA, USA

4Department of Environmental Health, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA

5Health Services Policy and Practice, Brown University, Providence, RI, USA

6Department of Public Health and Family Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA

7Committee for Boston Public Housing, Boston, MA, USA

8Somerville Transportation Equity Partnership, Somerville, MA, USA

Corresponding authors: Christina H. Fuller, ScD, Institute of Public Health, Georgia State University, P.O. Box 3995, Atlanta, GA 30302-3995, USA, Phone: +1-404-413-1388, Fax: +1-404-413-1140; and Department of Environmental Health, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; and Doug Brugge, PhD, Department of Public Health and Family Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, 136 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02111, USA, Phone: +1-617-636-0326, Fax: +1-617-636-4017

Citation Information: Reviews on Environmental Health. Volume 28, Issue 1, Pages 21–35, ISSN (Online) 2191-0308, ISSN (Print) 0048-7554, DOI: 10.1515/reveh-2012-0029, April 2013

Publication History

Received:
2012-09-07
Accepted:
2013-01-22
Published Online:
2013-04-04

Abstract

Current literature is insufficient to make causal inferences or establish dose-response relationships for traffic-related ultrafine particles (UFPs) and cardiovascular (CV) health. The Community Assessment of Freeway Exposure and Health (CAFEH) is a cross-sectional study of the relationship between UFP and biomarkers of CV risk. CAFEH uses a community-based participatory research framework that partners university researchers with community groups and residents. Our central hypothesis is that chronic exposure to UFP is associated with changes in biomarkers. The study enrolled more than 700 residents from three near-highway neighborhoods in the Boston metropolitan area in Massachusetts, USA. All participants completed an in-home questionnaire and a subset (440+) completed an additional supplemental questionnaire and provided biomarkers. Air pollution monitoring was conducted by a mobile laboratory equipped with fast-response instruments, at fixed sites, and inside the homes of selected study participants. We seek to develop improved estimates of UFP exposure by combining spatiotemporal models of ambient UFP with data on participant time-activity and housing characteristics. Exposure estimates will then be compared with biomarker levels to ascertain associations. This article describes our study design and methods and presents preliminary findings from east Somerville, one of the three study communities.

Keywords: biomarker; Community Assessment of Freeway Exposure and Health (CAFEH); community-based participatory research (CBPR); ultrafine particles

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