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Early life exposure to coal mine fire and tobacco smoke affect subclinical vascular function


Zhao, B and Johnston, FH and O'Sullivan, T and Williamson, G and Melody, S and Dalton, M and Venn, A and Negishi, K, Early life exposure to coal mine fire and tobacco smoke affect subclinical vascular function, Archives of Disease in Childhood, 105, (6) pp. 539-544. ISSN 0003-9888 (2020) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2019.

DOI: doi:10.1136/archdischild-2019-317528


Objective: To evaluate whether vascular health in young children was associated with exposure to a 6-week episode of coal mine fire smoke or environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) in a retrospective cohort study.

Methods: Three years after a coal mine fire in Victoria, Australia, we investigated the vascular health of children either in utero (n = 75) or aged < 2 years (postnatal exposure, n = 96) at the time of the fire. The outcomes were the carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) and pulse wave velocity (PWV). The mean and peak daily particulate matter < 2.5 m in diameter (PM2.5) exposures were estimated based on their daily locations throughout the fire period. Multivariable linear regression models were used to test for associations between the fire-related PM2.5 and outcomes adjusted for relevant covariates including ETS.

Results: In the postnatal-exposure group, each 10 g/m3 increase in mean PM2.5 level was independently positively associated with PWV (β=0.116, p=0.028). When these two groups were combined, there was an association between mean PM2.5 and increased PWV in those children who had ETS exposure (β=0.148, p=0.033) or whose mothers smoked (β=0.151, p=0.011), but not in those not exposed to ETS or maternal smoking.

Conclusions: Three years after a coal mine fire, infants aged up to 2 years at the time of exposure have increases in vascular stiffness. Although no adverse effects were observed in the in uterus exposure group, further follow-up study is needed to elucidate the long-term effects of coal mine fire smoke exposure.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:smoke, tobacco, pollution, child health, vascular
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Public health
Research Field:Community child health
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health)
Objective Field:Neonatal and child health
UTAS Author:Zhao, B (Miss Bing Zhao)
UTAS Author:Johnston, FH (Professor Fay Johnston)
UTAS Author:O'Sullivan, T (Miss Tierney O'Sullivan)
UTAS Author:Williamson, G (Dr Grant Williamson)
UTAS Author:Melody, S (Dr Shannon Melody)
UTAS Author:Dalton, M (Ms Marita Dalton)
UTAS Author:Venn, A (Professor Alison Venn)
UTAS Author:Negishi, K (Dr Kazuaki Negishi)
ID Code:137600
Year Published:2020 (online first 2019)
Web of Science® Times Cited:9
Deposited By:Plant Science
Deposited On:2020-02-21
Last Modified:2020-07-27

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