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Human Exposure And The Risk Of Cardiovascular Disease Development

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With regards to the health effects of PM2.5, epidemiological and clinical studies suggest a strong association between human exposure to PM2.5 and the risk of cardiovascular disease development. These studies have shown that exposure to PM2.5 from ambient air pollution and/or tobacco smoking is linked to a number of cardiovascular conditions including hypertension126, coronary artery disease127, myocardial infarction128, 129, atherosclerosis126, and arrhythmia130. To this end, short term exposure (< 24 hours) to PM2.5 is associated with 0.4% to 1% increase in the relative risk of daily cardiovascular mortality131, whereas long term exposure posed a higher relative risk131, 132 . Interestingly, the risk of atherosclerosis as measured by…show more content…
Thus, deposition of PM2.5 on alveoli was found to trigger an inflammatory response and oxidative stress, accompanied with the release of a host of pro-inflammatory mediators, vasoactive molecules and reactive oxygen species into the circulation. These will subsequently affect the vascular integrity and induce thrombogenesis138, 140. Also, it has been proposed that PM2.5 can modulate the autonomic nervous system and result in increased vasoconstriction and change heart rate variability, which will potentially enhance the risk of developing arrhythmias and thrombosis141. Importantly, it has been found that the dose-response relationship between particulate matter exposure and cardiovascular mortality is also non-linear142. In fact, the observed dose-response curve was steep at low levels, suggesting that a consequential adverse cardiovascular outcome can happen as a result of exposure to low levels142. Interestingly, a study suggested that PM2.5 is responsible for more than 90% of the predicted harm caused by thirdhand smoke pollutants143. In summary, clearly, there is substantial evidence in the literature that PM2.5 from ambient air pollution and smoking exerts harmful effects on the cardiovascular system. However, whether e-cigarettes PM2.5 produces similar effects is not known yet, but warrants investigation. This notion is
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