Children exposed to traffic related pollution may be vulnerable to diminished lung function, states study.
"Earlier studies have shown that children are highly susceptible to the adverse effects of air pollution and suggest that exposure early in life may be particularly harmful," said researcher Goran Pershagen, professor of environmental medicine at the Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.
"In our prospective birth cohort study..., exposure to traffic-related air pollution during infancy was associated with decrease in lung function at age eight, with stronger effects indicated in boys, children with asthma and particularly in children sensitised to allergens," added Pershagen, the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine reports.
The study included more than 1,900 children, who were followed from birth through age eight with repeated questionnaires, spirometry and immunoglobulin E. measurements, according to a Karolinska statement.
"Our study shows that early exposure to traffic-related air pollution has long-term adverse effects on respiratory health in children, particularly among atopic children," Pershagen said.
"These results add to a large body of evidence demonstrating the detrimental effects of air pollution on human health," he added.