Cohort profile: The Environmental-Pollution-Induced Neurological EFfects (EPINEF) study: A multicenter cohort study of Korean adults

Heeseon Jang, Woojin Kim, Jaelim Cho, Jungwoo Sohn, Juhwan Noh, Gayoung Seo, Seung Koo Lee, Young Noh, Sung Soo Oh, Sang Baek Koh, Hee Jin Kim, Sang Won Seo, Ho Hyun Kim, Jung Il Lee, Sun Young Kim, Changsoo Kim

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5 Citations (Scopus)


The general population is exposed to numerous environmental pollutants, and it remains unclear which pollutants affect the brain, accelerating brain aging and increasing the risk of dementia. The Environmental-Pollution-Induced Neurological Effects study is a multi-city prospective cohort study aiming to comprehensively investigate the effect of different environmental pollutants on brain structures, neuropsychological function, and the development of dementia in adults. The baseline data of 3,775 healthy elderly people were collected from August 2014 to March 2018. The eligibility criteria were age ?50 years and no self-reported history of dementia, movement disorders, or stroke. The assessment included demographics and anthropometrics, laboratory test results, and individual levels of exposure to air pollution. A neuroimaging sub-cohort was also recruited with 1,022 participants during the same period, and brain magnetic resonance imaging and neuropsychological tests were conducted. The first follow-up environmental pollutant measurements will start in 2022 and the follow-up for the sub-cohort will be conducted every 3-4 years. We have found that subtle structural changes in the brain may be induced by exposure to airborne pollutants such as particulate matter 10 ?m or less in diameter (PM10), particulate matter 2.5 ?m or less in diameter (PM2.5) and Mn10, manganese in PM10; Mn2.5, manganese in PM2.5. PM10, PM2.5, and nitrogen dioxide in healthy adults. This study provides a basis for research involving large-scale, long-Term neuroimaging assessments in community-based populations.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2021067
JournalEpidemiology and health
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Korean Society of Epidemiology. All Rights Reserved.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Epidemiology


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