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Ozone exposure, antioxidant genes, and lung function in an elderly cohort: VA Normative Aging Study
  1. Stacey E. Alexeeff (staceyac{at}stat.cmu.edu)
  1. Harvard School of Public Health, United States
    1. Augusto A. Litonjua
    1. Harvard Medical School, United States
      1. Robert O. Wright
      1. Harvard Medical School, United States
        1. Andrea Baccarelli
        1. Harvard School of Public Health, United States
          1. Helen Suh
          1. Harvard School of Public Health, United States
            1. David Sparrow
            1. Boston University School of Medicine, United States
              1. Pantel S. Vokonas
              1. Boston University School of Medicine, United States
                1. Joel Schwartz
                1. Harvard School of Public Health, United States

                  Abstract

                  Background: Ozone exposure is known to cause oxidative stress. We investigated the acute effects of ozone (O3) on lung function in the elderly, a suspected risk group. We then investigated whether genetic polymorphisms of antioxidant genes (heme oxygenase-1 [HMOX1] and glutathione S-transferase pi [GSTP1]) modified these associations.

                  Methods: We studied 1,100 elderly men from the Normative Aging Study whose lung function (forced vital capacity [FVC] and forced expiratory volume in one second [FEV1]) was measured every 3 years from 1995-2005. We genotyped the GSTP1 Ile105Val and Ala114Val polymorphisms and the (GT)n repeat polymorphism in the HMOX1 promoter, classifying repeats as short (n<25) or long (n≥25). Ambient O3 was measured continuously at locations in the Greater Boston area. We used mixed linear models, adjusting for known confounders.

                  Results: A 15 ppb increase in O3 during the previous 48 hours was associated with a 1.25% decrease in FEV1 (95% CI: -1.96%, -0.54%). This estimated effect was worsened with either the presence of a long (GT)n repeat in HMOX1 (-1.38%, 95% CI: -2.11%, -0.65) or the presence of an allele coding for Val105 in GSTP1 (-1.69%, 95% CI: -2.63%, -0.75). A stronger estimated effect of O3 on FEV1 was found in subjects carrying both the GSTP1 105Val variant and the HMOX1 long (GT)n repeat (-1.94%, 95% CI: -2.89%, -0.98%). Similar associations were also found between FVC and ozone exposure.

                  Conclusions: Our results suggest that ozone has an acute effect on lung function in the elderly, and the effects may be modified by the presence of specific polymorphisms in antioxidant genes.

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