Susceptibility Factors Relevant for the Association Between Long-Term Air Pollution Exposure and Incident Asthma

Curr Environ Health Rep. 2016 Mar;3(1):23-39. doi: 10.1007/s40572-016-0084-1.


In this review, we identified 15 studies in children and 10 studies in adults that assessed the association between long-term exposure to air pollution and incident asthma and that conducted stratified analyses to explore potential susceptibility factors. Overall, adult never-/former smokers seem to be at higher risk of incident asthma due to air pollution. Children without atopy and children from low socioeconomic status families also seem to be at higher risk of incident asthma due to air pollution. While interaction between air pollution and genes involved in the response to oxidative stress pathways have been explored, results are somewhat inconsistent and in need of replication. To evaluate interactions, large sample sizes are necessary, and much more research, including data pooling from existing studies, is needed to further explore susceptibility factors for asthma incidence due to long-term air pollution exposure.

Keywords: Air pollution; Incident asthma; Long-term exposure; Susceptibility factors.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Air Pollutants / analysis
  • Air Pollutants / toxicity*
  • Air Pollution / adverse effects*
  • Air Pollution / analysis
  • Asthma / epidemiology
  • Asthma / etiology*
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Environmental Exposure / analysis
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Nitrogen Dioxide / analysis
  • Nitrogen Dioxide / toxicity
  • Ozone / analysis
  • Ozone / toxicity
  • Particulate Matter / analysis
  • Particulate Matter / toxicity*
  • Risk Factors
  • Smoking / adverse effects
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Sulfur Dioxide / analysis
  • Sulfur Dioxide / toxicity


  • Air Pollutants
  • Particulate Matter
  • Sulfur Dioxide
  • Ozone
  • Nitrogen Dioxide