Acute effect of fine particulate matter on blood pressure, heart rate and related inflammation biomarkers: A panel study in healthy adults

Zhaoyuan Li, Yisi Liu, Tianjun Lu, Shouxin Peng, Feifei Liu, Jinhui Sun, Hao Xiang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Epidemiological evidence of short-term fine particulate matter (PM2.5) exposure on blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR) and related inflammation biomarkers has been inconsistent. We aimed to explore the acute effect of PM2.5 on BP, HR and the mediation effect of related inflammation biomarkers. A total of 32 healthy college students were recruited to perform 4 h of exposure at two sites with different PM2.5 concentrations in Wuhan between May 2019 and June 2019. The individual levels of PM2.5 concentration, BP and HR were measured hourly for each participant. Blood was drawn from each participant after each visit and we measured the levels of inflammation markers, including serum high-sensitivity C-reactive protein and plasma fibrinogen. Linear mixed-effect models were to explore the acute effect of PM2.5 exposure on BP, HR, and related inflammation biomarkers. In addition, we evaluated related inflammation biomarkers as the mediator in the association of PM2.5 and cardiovascular health indicators. The results showed that a 10 μg/m3 increment in PM2.5 concentration was associated with an increase of 0.84 (95% CI: 0.54, 1.15) beats/min (bpm) in HR and a 3.52% (95% CI: 1.60%, 5.48%) increase in fibrinogen. The lag effect model showed that the strongest effect on HR was observed at lag 3 h of PM2.5 exposure [1.96 bpm (95% CI: 1.19, 2.75)], but for fibrinogen, delayed exposure attenuated the association. Increased fibrinogen levels may account for 39.07% (P = 0.44) of the elevated HR by PM2.5. Null association was observed when it comes to short-term PM2.5 exposure and BP. Short-term exposure to PM2.5 was associated with elevated HR and increased fibrinogen levels. But our finding was not enough to suggest that exposure to PM2.5 might induce adverse cardiovascular effects by the pathway of inflammation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113024
JournalEcotoxicology and Environmental Safety
StatePublished - Dec 25 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors


  • Acute effect
  • Fibrinogen
  • Heart rate
  • Individual PM exposure
  • Mediation effect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


Dive into the research topics of 'Acute effect of fine particulate matter on blood pressure, heart rate and related inflammation biomarkers: A panel study in healthy adults'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this