Early exposure to air pollution may affect thinking skills later


Parents, take note. If your child is exposed to air pollution, their thinking skills may decline later in life, a study has found. The study indicates that more exposure to air pollution early in life was associated with a detrimental effect on human cognitive skills after 60 years. “For the first time we have shown the effect that exposure to air pollution in early life can be present in the brain many decades later,” says Tom Rush, co-author of the University of Edinburgh.

For the study, published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Design, the researchers tested the general intelligence of more than 500 people who were part of the Lothian Birth Cohort 193636 study, which they used at about 70 years of age and completed at all ages. 11 years.

The test was repeated at 76 and 79 years of age.

And, a record of where each person lived their lives was used to estimate the level of air pollution in their first years.

The research proved that there was a small but identifiable association with worse cognitive changes between the ages of 11 and 70 years in contact with air pollution in childhood.

The study shows that it is possible to predict historical air pollution and explore how it relates to lifelong cognitive abilities, the researchers said.

Researchers say that the lack of information on air pollution levels before routine monitoring began before the 1990s made it impossible to detect the effects of early exposure to air pollution on thinking ability in later life.

For this study, the team used a model called EMEP4UK Atmospheric Chemical Transportation Model – to determine the level of pollution – known as historical historical fine particulate matter (PM2.5) concentrations for 1935, 1950, 1970, 1980 and 1990.

They combined these historical findings with contemporary modeled data to estimate life exposure from 2001.


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