Tags: air | pollution | allergies

Air Pollution Fuels Rise in Allergies: Study

By    |   Tuesday, 05 May 2015 04:04 PM

The unexplained rise in allergies in recent decades may be tied to air pollution. That’s the conclusion of new research out of Canada that shows exposure to outdoor air pollution during the first year of life increases the risk of developing allergies to food, mold, pets, and pests.

The Canadian Healthy Infant Longitudinal Development study, published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, suggests sensitivity to such allergens is especially acute in children exposed to high levels of traffic-related air pollution in infancy.

"With the increasing rates of allergies amongst children in Canada and elsewhere, we were interested in determining if air pollution from traffic might be partially responsible," said Michael Brauer, the study's senior author and a professor in the School of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia.

"This is the first study to find a link between air pollution and measured allergic sensitization during the first year."

The findings are based on an analysis of the medical records of about 3,500 families and their infants across Canada who are being tracked for genetic and environmental factors that contribute to health issues.

The children were given with skin allergy testing at approximately 1 year of age for sensitivity to 10 allergens, including cat, dog, dust mites, cockroach, fungus, milk, egg, soy, and peanut.

The results showed 16 percent were sensitive to at least one of the tested allergens; 12.5 percent were sensitive to a food allergen; and 5.3 percent were sensitive to an inhalant allergen.

Exposure to air pollution was assessed by estimating nitrogen dioxide levels at each child's home address.

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The unexplained rise in allergies may be tied to air pollution, according to new research that shows exposure to outdoor contaminants during the first year of life increases the risk of developing allergies to food, mold, and pets.
air, pollution, allergies
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2015-04-05
Tuesday, 05 May 2015 04:04 PM
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