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Traffic pollution linked to childhood asthma

Babies born in areas with heavy traffic have a higher risk of developing asthma than those exposed to less pollution in the womb, study shows.
Infants born in areas with higher levels of traffic pollution are more likely to develop asthma as a result of genetic alterations in the womb, new research has found.

A study conducted by a team of researchers from the University of Cincinnati and Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health revealed that prenatal exposure to chemical compounds caused by increased traffic pollution can be linked to childhood asthma.

Author of the report published on February 16th, Dr Shuk-mei Ho said: "Our data support the concept that environmental exposures can interact with genes during key developmental periods to trigger disease onset later in life, and that tissues are being reprogrammed to become abnormal later.

"This research is aimed at detecting early signs of asthma risk so that we can better prevent this chronic disease."

According to Asthma UK, 1.1 million children currently receive treatment for asthma in the UK - that's one in 11 kids presenting symptoms of the condition.

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