Trainee Oriented Research Activities

A prospective study of health impacts from a stove and chimney intervention program for indoor air pollution in rural China

To determine whether intervention programs that introduce design changes in stoves, chimneys, and health education improve indoor air pollution and reduce respiratory diseases in rural China, the IEHS started an intervention trial in 2004 in four provinces (Guizhou, Gansu, Shanshi, Inner Mongolia) involving a total of 50,000 households with more than 200,000 people. Each study area has an intervention group (change in stove and chimney design and education about IAP) and a control group (no intervention activities).  This is one of the largest intervention trial for indoor air pollution and human health in the most polluted areas in rural China.  The results will provide important information for understanding the potential health benefits from indoor air pollution intervention programs. The study is currently in the follow-up stage by collecting information on exposure of interest, confounding factors, and various acute and chronic diseases. A prospective comparative study of the health impacts from exposure to different types of outdoor air pollution in Chinese cities.  Unlike the previous intervention study, which emphasizes indoor air pollution and human health in China’s rural areas, this prospective study was designed to study outdoor air pollution and human health in  China’s large cities. Outdoor levels of TSP, SO2, PM10, and NO2 are measured daily in each city. Daily mortality data for respiratory diseases and cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are also collected. Data on daily hospitalization for childhood asthma, respiratory diseases, and CVD are also collected by the disease registration and reporting system.  

Air pollution and adverse pregnancy outcomes 

The association between ambient air pollution and adverse pregnancy outcomes is increasingly drawing worldwide attention.  Very few studies, however, have been conducted in such a high-exposure country such as China, one of countries with the world’s most polluted cities and also having the largest burden of adverse pregnancy outcomes. A study of Air Pollution and Adverse Pregnancy Outcomes is currently conducted in China.  The study will be built upon the on-going epidemiological study of Air Pollution and Human Health in Chinese Cities.  The primary aim of the prospective birth cohort study is to investigate quantitatively the relationship between daily levels of major ambient air pollutants (SO2, NO2, PM10, CO, and O3) and adverse pregnancy outcomes in several Chinese cities. The major outcomes of the study include the birth outcomes for the singleton newborns and their ultrasound measures of fetal growth during pregnancy. 

Beijing Olympic Study

This study was conducted to assess Air Pollution Intervention in Beijing and Human Health during the Beijing Olympic Games.  Air samples and blood samples were collected before, during and after the Beijing Olympic Games.  Interviews were conducted for traffic conductors, selected school children and residents.  The study has completed its chemical analysis and biosample analyses and is currently conducting data analyses.