Traffic-related air pollution and risk of preterm birth in the San Joaquin Valley of California.Ann Epidemiol. 2014 Dec; 24(12):888-95e4.AE
To evaluate associations between traffic-related air pollution during pregnancy and preterm birth in births in four counties in California during years 2000 to 2006.
We used logistic regression to examine the association between the highest quartile of ambient air pollutants (carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, particulate matter <10 and 2.5 μm) and traffic density during pregnancy and each of five levels of prematurity based on gestational age at birth (20-23, 24-27, 28-31, 32-33, and 34-36 weeks) versus term (37-42 weeks). We examined trimester averages and the last month and the last 6 weeks of pregnancy. Models were adjusted for birthweight, maternal age, race/ethnicity, education, prenatal care, and birth costs payment. Neighborhood socioeconomic status (SES) was evaluated as a potential effect modifier.
There were increased odds ratios (ORs) for early preterm birth for those exposed to the highest quartile of each pollutant during the second trimester and the end of pregnancy (adjusted OR, 1.4-2.8). Associations were stronger among mothers living in low SES neighborhoods (adjusted OR, 2.1-4.3). We observed exposure-response associations for multiple pollutant exposures and early preterm birth. Inverse associations during the first trimester were observed.
The results confirm associations between traffic-related air pollution and prematurity, particularly among very early preterm births and low SES neighborhoods.