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Association of residential greenness, air pollution with adverse birth outcomes: Results from 61,762 mother‑neonatal pairs in project ELEFANT (2011–2021)

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Hyang-Min ByunORCiD


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© 2023Background: Emerging evidence has demonstrated the benefits of greenness exposure on human health, while conflicts remain unsolved in issue of adverse birth outcomes. Methods: Utilizing data from project ELEFANT spanning the years 2011 to 2021, we assessed residential greenness using the NDVI from MODIS data and residential PM2.5 exposure level from CHAP data. Our primary concerns were PTD, LBW, LGA, and SGA. Cox proportional hazard regression model was used to examine the association of residential greenness and air pollution exposure with risk of adverse birth outcomes. We performed mediation and modification effect analyses between greenness and air pollutant. Results: We identified 61,762 mother‑neonatal pairs in final analysis. For per 10 μg/m3 increase in PM2.5 concentration during entire pregnancy was associated with 19.8 % and 20.7 % increased risk of PTD and LGA. In contrast, we identified that an 0.1 unit increment in NDVI were associated with 24 %, 43 %, 26.5 %, and 39.5 % lower risk for PTD, LBW, LGA, and SGA, respectively. According to mediation analysis, NDVI mediated 7.70 % and 7.89 % of the associations between PM2.5 and PTD and LGA. Residential greenness could reduce the risk of PTD among mothers under 35 years old, living in rural areas, primigravidae and primiparity. Conclusions: In summary, our results highlighted the potential of residential greenness to mitigate the risk of adverse birth outcomes, while also pointing to the adverse impact of PM2.5 on increased risk of multiple adverse birth outcomes (PTD and LGA). The significant mediation effect of NDVI emphasizes its potential as an important protective factor of PM2.5 exposure. Additionally, the identification of susceptible subgroups can inform targeted interventions to reduce adverse birth outcomes related to air pollution and lack of green spaces. Further research and understanding of these associations can contribute to better public health strategies aimed at promoting healthier pregnancies and birth outcomes.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Yu Y, Lin H, Liu Q, Ma Y, Zhao L, Li W, Zhou Y, Byun H-M, Li P, Li C, Sun C, Chen X, Liu Z, Dong W, Chen L, Deng F, Wu S, Hou S, Guo L

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Science of the Total Environment

Year: 2024

Volume: 912

Print publication date: 20/02/2024

Online publication date: 23/12/2023

Acceptance date: 18/12/2023

ISSN (print): 0048-9697

ISSN (electronic): 1879-1026

Publisher: Elsevier B.V.


DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2023.169549

PubMed id: 38145684


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