Air pollution may result in lowered HDL cholesterol levels and particle levels, possibly explaining the link between air pollution and heart disease, reports Medscape. 

Many studies have associated air pollution with increased risk of a number of diseases, especially cardiovascular disease; the possible nature of the association has been widely explored but the answer remains elusive.

According to the work of Dr Griffith Bell (University of Washington School of Public Health, Seattle) and colleagues, published April 13, 2017 in Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology, the link may be related pollution’s HDL-lowering effect, although by what mechanism isn’t clear.

The group looked at data from 6654 white, black, Chinese, and Hispanic adults ages 45 to 84 years living in six metropolitan US regions without clinical cardiovascular disease at baseline, in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis Air Pollution (MESA Air).

 They studied where participants lived at the time, pollution factors at their locations, individual HDL-cholesterol levels at baseline, and number of HDL particles—which some studies have said is a better predictor of cardiovascular disease than cholesterol levels alone.
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