AirNB Project

Prenatal exposure to urban air pollution and pre and post-natal brain development (AIR-NB)

The general objective of AIR-NB is to assess the effect of prenatal exposure to urban air pollution on prenatal and postnatal brain development.

Air pollution is the main environmental hazard related to the city and the main environmental contributor to the global burden of diseases. Studying the structural and functional brain effects of exposure to air pollution during neurological and fetal development during the first years of life is important because the effects at this time are potentially irreversible and the greatest opportunities for prevention occur during these periods.

Why urban air pollution and pre and post natal brain development?

Strong evidence suggests that environmental toxics contribute to a global and silent pandemic of brain development problems. Optimal brain development involves multiple complex stages that must be completed sequentially, mainly during fetal and early life2. These processes are exceptionally vulnerable to interference from adverse environments. Poor brain development leads to: neurobehavioral disorders (ie, autism spectrum disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)), whose prevalence appears to be increasing, dysfunctional cognitive development and long-term harmful effects on well-being and health mental., or having been raised in urban areas is associated with a detrimental impact on brain function and an increased risk of neurobehavioral disorders.

On the whole, it is expected that rapid urbanization and a higher prevalence of neurobehavioral disorders in urban areas will accelerate the already considerable global burden associated with these conditions in the coming years.

This project has received funds from the European Research Council (ERC) within the framework of the research and innovation program of the European Union, Horizon 2020, within the framework of the ERC-2017-ADG call.

See more about the project on the ISGlobal website:

AirNB Project