Air pollution is now becoming an independent risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Numerous epidemiological, biomedical and clinical studies indicate that ambient particulate matter (PM) in air pollution is strongly associated with increased cardiovascular disease such as myocardial infarction (MI), cardiac arrhythmias, ischemic stroke, vascular dysfunction, hypertension and atherosclerosis. The molecular mechanisms for PM-caused cardiovascular disease include directly toxicity to cardiovascular system or indirectly injury by inducing systemic inflammation and oxidative stress in peripheral circulation. Here, we review the linking between PM exposure and the occurrence of cardiovascular disease and discussed the possible underlying mechanisms for the observed PM induced increases in cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.
Keywords: Particulate matter (PM); cardiovascular disease; morbidity; mortality.