Long- term ex­po­sure to ozone can dam­age your health: Re­search

Data taken from three re­gions

The Asian Age - - Science + Health -

Wash­ing­ton, Oct. 13: A new study has utilised a novel method to es­ti­mate long- term ozone ex­po­sure to quan­tify the health bur­den from long- term ozone ex­po­sure in three ma­jor re­gions of the world.

The re­search, con­ducted at the Duke Univer­sity es­ti­mated that 266,000 ( con­fi­dence in­ter­val: 186,000338,000) pre­ma­ture mor­tal­i­ties across Europe, the USA, and China in 2015 were at­trib­ut­able to longterm ex­po­sure to ozone ( O3).

The find­ings are pub­lished in the Jour­nal of En­vi­ron­men­tal Re­search Let­ters. Karl Seltzer, study’s lead au­thor said, “Then there is strong epi­demi­o­log­i­cal and tox­i­co­log­i­cal ev­i­dence link­ing am­bi­ent ozone ex­po­sure to ad­verse health ef­fects.

“His­tor­i­cally, much of the pre­vi­ous re­search fo­cused on the short- term im­pacts. We utilised re­sults from the grow­ing body of ev­i­dence that links longterm O3 ex­po­sure and in­creased cause- spe­cific pre­ma­ture mor­tal­iti- es, par­tic­u­larly from res­pi­ra­tory dis­eases,” Seltzer added. For the study, the re­searchers used 2015 data from ground- based mon­i­tor­ing net­works in the USA, Europe, and China to es­ti­mate long- term O3 ex­po­sure. They then cal­cu­lated pre­ma­ture mor­tal­i­ties us­ing ex­po­sure-re­sponse re­la­tion­ships from two Amer­i­can Can­cer So­ci­ety ( ACS) can­cer preven­tion stud­ies.

Seltzer added, “Global es­ti­mates of O3 ex­po­sure are of­ten made us­ing sta­teof- the- art chem­i­cal trans­port mod­els ( CTMs). How­ever, we based our study on ob­served air qual­ity data, be­cause it has sev­eral ad­van­tages over CTM mod­el­ling ap­proaches.” In­ter­est­ingly, the team’s ob­ser­va­tion­ally- de­rived data shows smaller hu­man- health im­pacts when com­pared to prior mod­el­ling re­sults.

Ex­plain­ing this, Seltzer ex­plained that this dif­fer­ence is due to small bi­ases in mod­eled re­sults. These small bi­ases are sub­se­quently am­pli­fied by non­lin­ear ex­po­sure- re­sponse curves. This high­lights the im­por­tance of ac­cu­rately es­ti­mat­ing longterm O3 ex­po­sure in health im­pact as­sess­ments.

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