Concentration–response functions for PM2.5 exposure and morbidities of five end points: A case study of Arizona

Authors: Ying Liu*, Texas Tech University, Guofeng Cao, Texas Tech University
Topics: Environment, Hazards, Risks, and Disasters
Keywords: PM2.5, Relative Risk, Morbidity, Concentration-response curve
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/13/2018
Start / End Time: 10:00 AM / 11:40 AM
Room: Studio 8, Marriott, 2nd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Fine particulate matter (PM2.5) has been identified as a leading risk factor for global burden of disease. Although many studies have explored the adverse effects of PM2.5 exposure on public health, it is not a trivial task to exhaustively estimate morbidity attributable to PM2.5 exposure due to the lack of relative risks (RRs) of PM2.5 exposure and concentration-response (C-R) functions for many diseases. In this study, we applied a random forests based regression kriging (RFRK) approach to produce a time-series annual average PM2.5 concentration dataset for 2005-2014 with relatively high accuracy and fine spatial resolution compared with the PM2.5 concentration datasets used in the previous PM2.5-attributable morbidity/mortality studies. Based on the RFRK-PM2.5 concentration dataset and the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project’s inpatient data in Arizona, we calculated RRs of PM2.5 exposure and developed C-R functions between PM2.5 exposure and morbidities for five end points (i.e., asthma, chronic respiratory infection, skin cancer, heart, and cerebrovascular diseases) that are not available in present literature. We found that female’s RRs of morbidity for all-cause, skin cancer, and cerebrovascular diseases are significantly higher than those of male while female’s RR of asthma is significantly lower than that of male. We also discovered that Hispanic Americans more easily suffer from asthma than White Americans due to PM2.5 exposure, and White Americans’ RRs of skin cancer and cerebrovascular diseases are apparently higher than those of Africa Americans. These findings suggest that PM2.5 exposure has different adverse impacts on persons with different genders or races.

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