Posted on March 22nd, 2007
- Air Pollution
- Vitamins [including Folic Acid]
- Hazardous Waste
- Asthma Inhalers
- Antiepileptic Drugs
- Stress (pre-birth)
- Alcohol and Smoking
- Alcohol consumption during early pregnancy may increase risk for cleft lip or palate
- Tobacco and alcohol use during pregnancy and risk of oral clefts.
- Maternal alcohol use and risk of orofacial cleft birth defects
- Significant link found between babies born with cleft lip or palate and mother’s smoking during pregnancy.
- Orofacial clefts, parental cigarette smoking, and transforming growth factor-alpha gene variants
Ambient Air Pollution and Risk of Birth Defects in Southern California
The authors of this study evaluated the effect of air pollution on the occurrence of birth defects ascertained by the California Birth Defects Monitoring Program in neonates and fetuses delivered in southern California in 1987Â1993. By using measurements from ambient monitoring stations of carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen dioxide, ozone, and particulate matter <10 Âµm in aerodynamic diameter, they calculated average monthly exposure estimates for each pregnancy. Conventional, polytomous, and hierarchical logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratios for subgroups of cardiac and orofacial defects. Odds ratios for cardiac ventricular septal defects increased in a doseresponse fashion with increasing second-month CO exposure. Similarly, risks for aortic artery and valve defects, pulmonary artery and valve anomalies, and conotruncal defects increased with second-month ozone exposure. The study was inconclusive for other air pollutants.
None of the four pollutants measured had a significant or dose-related effect on the risk of orofacial cleft defects. To quote from the report, “when exposure quartiles were used, first-month carbon monoxide exposure exhibited some effects on both isolated cleft types but lacked a doseresponse pattern for cleft palate, and effects were not observed consistently in single- and multiple-pollutant models. No other pollutant showed a consistent effect on isolated orofacial clefts.”
This is the first known study to link ambient air pollution during a vulnerable window of development to human malformations. The study concluded that confirmation by further studies is needed.
- Beate Ritz, Fei Yu, Scott Fruin, Guadalupe Chapa, Gary M. Shaw and John A. Harris. Ambient Air Pollution and Risk of Birth Defects in Southern California American Journal of Epidemiology Vol. 155, No. 1 : 17-25, January 2002. See also: http://aje.oupjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/155/1/17 AND http://www.niehs.nih.gov/centers/2002News/news2.htm [verified 22 March 2007] [↩]
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