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Environmental exposure and health effects in a highly polluted area of Northern Italy: a narrative review

  • Carlotta AliasEmail author
  • Laura Benassi
  • Luca Bertazzi
  • Sabrina Sorlini
  • Marialuisa Volta
  • Umberto Gelatti
Review Article
  • 64 Downloads

Abstract

Human health and well-being are strongly linked to the state of the environment. The high industrial pressure present in the Province of Brescia, located in Northern Italy, produced strong environmental and health concerns. This narrative review of the literature aims at identifying the studies focused on the association between exposure to environmental pollutants and health effects in the population living in this area. Thirteen papers fitted the inclusion criteria: five were focused on the connection among pollutants present in air matrix and health effects, seven on both air and soil, and one on soil. No study investigated the relationship with water pollution. The great variability in the analyzed end-points made it difficult to draw precise conclusions, but the fact that, in almost all the studies, the investigated health effects have a positive association with the exposure to different kinds of pollutants, allows us to hypothesize that the considered population is living in an area where the “environmental pressure” could produce significant health effects in the future.

Keywords

Environmental pollution Environmental exposure Environmental pressure Health effects High-polluted area Public health 

Abbreviations

ACS

Acute coronary syndrome

AF

Atrial fibrillation

AHF

Acute hear failure

AST/ALT

Aspartate transaminase/alanine transaminase

Asth

Asthma

BG

Bergamo city

BS

Brescia city

BOLD

Blood-oxygen-level dependent

CFB

Cognitive function and behavior

CMM

Cutaneous malignant melanoma

CVD

Cardiovascular disease

df

Degree of freedom

DVT

Deep vein thrombosis

fMRI

Functional magnetic resonance imaging

IPD

Idiopathic Parkinson disease

IQ

Intelligent quotient

MN

Micronuclei

MVA

Malignant ventricular arrhythmia

NBF

Neurobehavioral function

NHL

Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

OF

Olfactory function

OR

Odds ratio

PCBs

Polychlorinated biphenyls

PD

Parkinsonian disorders

RD

Respiratory disease

RR

Relative risk

SD

Standard deviation

SMR

standardized morbidity ratio

Thy

Thyroid hormones

UPDRS

Unified Parkinson’s disease rating scale

Notes

Acknowledgments

This work was supported by the “Health and Wealth Strategic Programme” of the University of Brescia.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.B+LabNet - Environmental Sustainability LabUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly
  2. 2.Department of Economics and ManagementUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly
  3. 3.Department of Civil, Environmental, Architectural Engineering and MathematicsUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly
  4. 4.Department of Mechanical and Industrial EngineeringUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly
  5. 5.Department of Medical and Surgical Specialties, Radiological Sciences, and Public HealthUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly

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