Residential proximity to traffic-related pollution and atherosclerosis in 4 vascular beds among African-American adults: Results from the Jackson heart study

​Yi  ​Wang, Gregory A. Wellenius, Demarc A. Hickson, Annie Gjelsvik, Charles B. Eaton, Sharon B. Wyatt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations


To our knowledge, no study has investigated the association of long-term exposure to traffic pollution with markers of atherosclerosis in 4 vascular beds simultaneously in an all-African-American cohort. Among participants in the Jackson Heart Study (Jackson, Mississippi; baseline mean age = 55.5 (standard deviation, 12.7) years), we used linear regression to estimate percent differences in carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) at baseline (2004) and used modified Poisson regression (robust error variance) to estimate prevalence ratios for peripheral artery disease (PAD), coronary artery calcification (CAC), and abdominal aortic calcification (AAC) at the first follow-up visit (2005-2008) for persons living less than 150m (versus more than 300 m) from major roadways, adjusting for confounders. Living less than 150m from such roadways was associated with a significant 6.67% (95% confidence interval: 1.28, 12.35) increase in CIMT (4,800 participants). PAD prevalence among persons living less than 150m from a major roadway was 1.17 (95% confidence interval: 0.73, 1.86) times that of persons living more than 300m away (4,443 participants), but this result was not statistically significant. There was no association for CAC or AAC. The association with CIMT was stronger in participants with a cardiovascular disease history than in those without one (P = 0.04). We observed an association in the carotid vascular beds but not the coronary, abdominal, or peripheral vascular beds. Our results highlight the need to consider residential proximity to roadways as a potential cardiovascular disease risk factor for blacks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)732-743
Number of pages12
JournalAmerican Journal of Epidemiology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016



  • Abdominal aortic calcification
  • African Americans
  • Air pollution
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Carotid intima-media thickness
  • Coronary artery calcification
  • Peripheral artery disease
  • Traffic pollution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology

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