Current Allergy and Asthma Reports

, Volume 12, Issue 3, pp 192–200

Recent Advances in the Epidemiologic Investigation of Risk Factors for Asthma: A Review of the 2011 Literature



The present review aims to identify and summarize epidemiologic investigations published during 2011 on the environmental risk factors for asthma. Potentially eligible papers were identified by a MEDLINE search. In total, 1,130 items were retrieved. Based on a broad definition of environment, the following topics were included: obesity, diet, vitamin D, air pollution, farming environment, and social factors. Some of the more relevant contributions included evidence that 1) obesity precedes asthma, 2) fruit consumption is longitudinally associated with a lower risk of asthma and atopy, 3) a comprehensive statewide smoking ban was followed by a reduction in hospital admissions for asthma, 4) asthma is one of the diseases showing the largest burdens due to environmental tobacco smoke, 5) traffic-related urban air pollution is associated with bronchial inflammation as measured by fractional exhaled nitric oxide and uncontrolled asthma, 6) aeroallergens and desert dust may contribute to the short-term effects of air pollution and asthma, and 7) maternal exposure to air pollution before and during pregnancy may alter the immune competence in offspring.


Asthma Epidemiology Review Advances Risk factors Obesity Diet Air pollution Allergens Tobacco Smoke Smoking Maternal exposure Environment Farming Social factors 


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CREAL-Centre for Research in Environmental EpidemiologyBarcelonaSpain

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