Residential Air Pollution, Road Traffic, Greenness and Maternal Hypertension: Results from GINIplus and LISAplus

Mario Jendrossek, Marie Standl, Sibylle Koletzko, Irina Lehmann, Carl-Peter Bauer, Tamara Schikowski, Andrea von Berg, Dietrich Berdel, Joachim Heinrich, Iana Markevych


Background: The public health burden of hypertension is high, but its relationship with long-term residential air pollution, road traffic, and greenness remains unclear.

Objective: To investigate associations between residential air pollution, traffic, greenness, and hypertension among mothers.

Methods: Information on doctor-diagnosed maternal hypertension was collected at the 15-year follow-up of two large population-based multicenter German birth cohorts—GINIplus and LISAplus (n=3063). Residential air pollution was modelled by land use regression models within the ESCAPE and universal kriging within the APMoSPHERE projects. Road traffic was defined as traffic load on major roads within a 100-m buffer around residences. Vegetation level (ie, greenness) was defined as the mean Normalized Difference Vegetation Index in a 500-m buffer around residences and was assessed from Landsat 5 TM satellite images. All the exposure variables were averaged over three residential addresses during the last 10 years and categorized into tertiles or dichotomized. The individual associations between each of the exposure variables and hypertension were assessed using logistic regression analysis.

Results: No significant and consistent associations across different levels of adjustment were observed between the exposures of interest and hypertension. The only significant estimate was found with coarse particulate matter concentrations (OR 1.66, 95% CI 1.01 to 2.74; 3rd vs 1st tertile) among mothers residing in the Wesel area. No significant associations were observed with traffic load or greenness.

Conclusion: This study does not provide evidence on detrimental effects of air pollution and road traffic or beneficial effects of greenness on hypertension among German adults.


Hypertension; Air pollution; Cohort studies; Satellite imagery; Geographic information systems; Remote sensing technology; Risk factors

doi: 10.15171/ijoem.2017.1073

 pISSN: 2008-6520
 eISSN: 2008-6814

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