Air pollutants such as NO2 and PM2.5 have consistently been linked to mortality, but only few previous studies have addressed associations with long-term exposure to black carbon (BC) and ozone (O3). We investigated the association between PM2.5, PM10, BC, NO2, and O3 and mortality in a Danish cohort of 49,564 individuals who were followed up from enrollment in 1993-1997 through 2015. Residential address history from 1979 onwards was combined with air pollution exposure obtained by the state-of-the-art, validated, THOR/AirGIS air pollution modelling system, and information on residential traffic noise exposure, lifestyle and socio-demography. We observed higher risks of all-cause as well as cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality with higher long-term exposure to PM2.5, PM10, BC, and NO2. For PM2.5 and CVD mortality, a hazard ratio (HR) of 1.29 (95% CI: 1.13-1.47) per 5 μg/m3 was observed, and correspondingly HRs of 1.16 (95% CI: 1.05-1.27) and 1.11 (95% CI: 1.04-1.17) were observed for BC (per 1 μg/m3) and NO2 (per 10 μg/m3), respectively. Adjustment for noise gave slightly lower estimates for the air pollutants and CVD mortality. Inverse relationships were observed for O3. None of the investigated air pollutants were related to risk of respiratory mortality. Stratified analyses suggested that the elevated risks of CVD and all-cause mortality in relation to long-term PM, NO2 and BC exposure were restricted to males. This study supports a role of PM, BC, and NO2 in all-cause and CVD mortality independent of road traffic noise exposure.
- Black carbon
- Particulate matter