A study shows that traffic pollution can expose children to an increased risk of asthma if they have genes that make them vulnerable, reports BBC News.
The study included 3,000 children and analyzed their medical history and genetic profile. The conclusion was that those with genetic variations are slightly more at risk for asthma, but if they live near a main street where traffic is increased then the risk increases.
The link between genes and respiratory diseases is still unclear, but researchers say genes control key chemicals in the body that help cleanse the body. Thus, the harmful chemicals we breathe should be eliminated from the body using these genes.
Specialists have found that if there are variations in the genes responsible for eliminating harmful chemicals from the body, the risk of asthma is 4 times higher. The problem is that in those children living near the main streets the risk is much higher.
The researchers consider this study promising, but not sufficient to provide solutions.
August 27, 2007