Mortality burden attributable to PM1 in Zhejiang province, China

Kejia Hu, Yuming Guo, Deyun Hu, Rongguang Du, Xuchao Yang, Jieming Zhong, Fangrong Fei, Feng Chen, Gongbo Chen, Qi Zhao, Jun Yang, Yunquan Zhang, Qian Chen, Tingting Ye, Shanshan Li, Jiaguo Qi

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Background: Limited evidence is available on the health effects of particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter of <1 μm (PM1), mainly due to the lack of its ground measurement worldwide. Objectives: To identify and examine the mortality risks and mortality burdens associated with PM1, PM2.5, and PM10 in Zhejiang province, China. Methods: We collected daily data regarding all-cause (stratified by age and gender), cardiovascular, stroke, respiratory, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) mortality, and PM1, PM2.5, and PM10, from 11 cities in Zhejiang province, China during 2013 and 2017. We used a quasi-Poisson regression model to estimate city-specific associations between mortality and PM concentrations. Then we used a random-effect meta-analysis to pool the provincial estimates. To show the mortality burdens of PM1, PM2.5, and PM10, we calculated the mortality fractions and deaths attributable to these PMs. Results: Daily concentrations of PM1, PM2.5, and PM10 ranged between 0–199 μg/m3, 0–218 μg/m3, and 0–254 μg/m3, respectively; Mortality effects were significant in lag 0–2 days. The relative risks for all-cause mortality were 1.0064 (95% CI: 1.0034, 1.0094), 1.0061 (95% CI: 1.0034, 1.0089), and 1.0060 (95% CI: 1.0038, 1.0083) associated with a 10 μg/m3 increase in PM1, PM2.5, and PM10, respectively. Age- and gender-stratified analysis shows that elderly people (aged 65+) and females are more sensitive to PMs. The mortality fractions of all-cause mortality were estimated to be 2.39% (95% CI: 1.28, 3.48) attributable to PM1, 2.53% (95% CI: 1.42, 3.63) attributable to PM2.5, and 3.08% (95% CI: 1.95, 4.19) attributable to PM10. The ratios of attributable cause-specific deaths for PM1/PM2.5, PM1/PM10, and PM2.5/PM10 were higher than the ratios of their respective concentrations. Conclusions: PM1, PM2.5 and PM10 are risk factors of all-cause, cardiovascular, stroke, respiratory, and COPD mortality. PM1 accounts for the vast majority of short-term PM2.5- and PM10-induced mortality. Our analyses support the notion that smaller size fractions of PM have a more toxic mortality impacts, which suggests to develop strategies to prevent and control PM1 in China, such as to foster strict regulations for automobile and industrial emissions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)515-522
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironment International
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018


  • Air pollution
  • China
  • Mortality
  • Mortality burden
  • Particulate matter
  • PM

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