Project at a Glance

Title: Air pollution effects on nasal function

Principal Investigator / Author(s): Tam, Elizabeth

Contractor: Cardiovascular Research Institute

Contract Number: A5-163-33

Research Program Area: Health & Exposure

Topic Areas: Health Effects of Air Pollution, Impacts


We performed a series of studies to determine whether sulfur dioxide and ozone increase nasal symptoms, nasal resistance to airflow, or nasal responses to other stimuli. In the first study, we found that sulfur dioxide did not acutely increase nasal symptoms or resistance to airflow in 12 subjects with demonstrated nasal a responsiveness to instillation of antigen or in ten subjects with a history of nasal responsiveness to antigenic or non-antigenic stimuli. In a second study, we found that ozone tended to cause an increase in rhinorrhea, nasal congestion and sneezing, but this increase in symptoms was not statistically significant, was small when compared to the effects of intranasal antigen, resistance. and was not associated with a statistically significant increase in nasal. Biochemical and cellular analysis of nasal lavage fluid from 8 of these subjects did not show a consistent or striking ozone-induced change in histamine, protein, or inflammatory cells in nasal secretions. Finally, results from our third study suggest that ozone augments nasal responsiveness to antigen in at least some subjects with allergic rhinitis.

For questions regarding this research project, including available data and progress status, contact: Research Division staff at (916) 445-0753

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