Association between ambient particulate matter exposure and platelet counts in adults: a retrospective cohort study


Associations between ambient particulate matter exposure and platelet counts are inconsistent in previous studies, and study on the effect of long-term exposure especially in Asian populations is limited. We explored the associations between long-term PM2.5 (particulate matter < 2.5 μm) exposure and platelet counts using a prospective cohort study in Northeast China. We used a logistic regression model to analyze the effects of different PM2.5 increments and platelet count elevation. Mixed linear models were used to analyze the association between PM2.5 concentration and platelet counts. Interaction and sub-group analyses were also conducted. Results showed that every 1 μg/m3 increment of PM2.5 exposure was associated with 0.29% (95%CI: 0.25–0.32%) increase in platelet counts and 10% (95%CI: 8–12%) higher risk of platelet elevation. Effects of long-term PM2.5 exposure on platelet elevation were stronger in male participants, of Han ethnicity, and without diabetes. Long-term PM2.5 exposure would increase platelet counts in adults in Northeast area of China, which might add more evidence to the potential biological mechanisms responsible for the effect of air pollution exposure on cardiovascular disease.

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We thank the participants of the cohort for their kind cooperation and all cohort team workers for their hard work. We thank the Bureau of Meteorology and the Environmental Protection Bureau for providing original data of daily pollutant concentrations.


This work was supported by the National Key R&D Project of China (grant number 2017YFC0907401, 2017) and 345 Talent Project of Shengjing Hospital of China Medical University.

Author information




Zhang Hehua analyzed the data and wrote the paper; Chang Qing reviewed the paper; Zhao Yuhong designed and reviewed the study process of the work.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Zhao Yuhong.

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Ethics approval and consent to participate

The protocol of this study was approved by the Institutional Review Board of Shengjing Hospital of China Medical University in 2017 (No. 2017PS190K). All the participants in this study consent to participate in the cohort and signed informed consent approved by Review Board.

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Not applicable.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Hehua, Z., Qing, C. & Yuhong, Z. Association between ambient particulate matter exposure and platelet counts in adults: a retrospective cohort study. Environ Sci Pollut Res (2021).

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  • Ambient particulate matter
  • Air pollution
  • Platelet counts
  • Cohort study