Blood leukocyte concentrations, FEV1 decline, and airflow limitation A 15-year longitudinal study of world trade center-exposed firefighters

Rachel Zeig-Owens, Ankura Singh, Thomas K. Aldrich, Charles B. Hall, Theresa Schwartz, Mayris P. Webber, Hillel W. Cohen, Kerry J. Kelly, Anna Nolan, David J. Prezant, Michael D. Weiden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Rationale: Rescue/recovery work at the World Trade Center disaster site (WTC) caused a proximate decline in lung function in Fire Department of the City of New York firefighters. A subset of this cohort experienced an accelerated rate of lung function decline over 15 years of post-September 11, 2001 (9/11) follow-up. Objectives: To determine if early postexposure blood leukocyte concentrations are biomarkers for subsequent FEV1 decline and incident airflow limitation. Methods: Individual rates of forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) change were calculated for 9,434 firefighters using 88,709 spirometric measurements taken between September 11, 2001, and September 10, 2016. We categorized FEV1 change rates into three trajectories: accelerated FEV1 decline (FEV1 loss >64 ml/yr), expected FEV1 decline (FEV1 loss between 0 and 64 ml/yr), and improved FEV1 (positive rate of change >0 ml/yr). Occurrence of FEV1/FVC less than 0.70 after 9/11 defined incident airflow limitation. Using regression models, we assessed associations of post-9/11 blood eosinophil and neutrophil concentrations with subsequent FEV1 decline and airflow limitation, adjusted for age, race, smoking, height, WTC exposure level, weight change, and baseline lung function. Results: Accelerated FEV1 decline occurred in 12.7% of participants (1,199 of 9,434), whereas post-9/11 FEV1 improvement occurred in 8.3% (780 of 9,434). Higher blood eosinophil and neutrophil concentrations were each associated with accelerated FEV1 decline after adjustment for covariates (odds ratio [OR], 1.10 per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.05-1.15; and OR, 1.10 per 1,000 neutrophils/μl; 95% CI, 1.05-1.15, respectively). Multivariable-adjusted linear regression models showed that a higher blood neutrophil concentration was associated with a faster rate of FEV1 decline (1.14 ml/yr decline per 1,000 neutrophils/μl; 95% CI, 0.69-1.60 ml/yr; P < 0.001). Higher blood eosinophil concentrations were associated with a faster rate of FEV1 decline in ever-smokers (1.46 ml/yr decline per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% CI, 0.65-2.26 ml/yr; P < 0.001) but not in never-smokers (P for interaction = 0.004). Higher eosinophil concentrations were also associated with incident airflow limitation (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.10 per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% CI, 1.04-1.15). Compared with the expected FEV1 decline group, individuals experiencing accelerated FEV1 decline were more likely to have incident airflow limitation (adjusted OR, 4.12; 95% CI, 3.30-5.14). Conclusions: Higher post-9/11 blood neutrophil and eosinophil concentrations were associated with subsequent accelerated FEV1 decline in WTC-exposed firefighters. Both higher blood eosinophil concentrations and accelerated FEV1 decline were associated with incident airflow limitation in WTC-exposed firefighters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-183
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of the American Thoracic Society
Volume15
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018

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Firefighters
Forced Expiratory Volume
Longitudinal Studies
Leukocytes
Eosinophils
Neutrophils
Confidence Intervals
Odds Ratio
Lung
Rescue Work
Linear Models

Keywords

  • Eosinophils
  • Longitudinal studies
  • Lung injury
  • Neutrophils
  • Spirometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

Cite this

Blood leukocyte concentrations, FEV1 decline, and airflow limitation A 15-year longitudinal study of world trade center-exposed firefighters. / Zeig-Owens, Rachel; Singh, Ankura; Aldrich, Thomas K.; Hall, Charles B.; Schwartz, Theresa; Webber, Mayris P.; Cohen, Hillel W.; Kelly, Kerry J.; Nolan, Anna; Prezant, David J.; Weiden, Michael D.

In: Annals of the American Thoracic Society, Vol. 15, No. 2, 01.02.2018, p. 173-183.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zeig-Owens, Rachel ; Singh, Ankura ; Aldrich, Thomas K. ; Hall, Charles B. ; Schwartz, Theresa ; Webber, Mayris P. ; Cohen, Hillel W. ; Kelly, Kerry J. ; Nolan, Anna ; Prezant, David J. ; Weiden, Michael D. / Blood leukocyte concentrations, FEV1 decline, and airflow limitation A 15-year longitudinal study of world trade center-exposed firefighters. In: Annals of the American Thoracic Society. 2018 ; Vol. 15, No. 2. pp. 173-183.
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abstract = "Rationale: Rescue/recovery work at the World Trade Center disaster site (WTC) caused a proximate decline in lung function in Fire Department of the City of New York firefighters. A subset of this cohort experienced an accelerated rate of lung function decline over 15 years of post-September 11, 2001 (9/11) follow-up. Objectives: To determine if early postexposure blood leukocyte concentrations are biomarkers for subsequent FEV1 decline and incident airflow limitation. Methods: Individual rates of forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) change were calculated for 9,434 firefighters using 88,709 spirometric measurements taken between September 11, 2001, and September 10, 2016. We categorized FEV1 change rates into three trajectories: accelerated FEV1 decline (FEV1 loss >64 ml/yr), expected FEV1 decline (FEV1 loss between 0 and 64 ml/yr), and improved FEV1 (positive rate of change >0 ml/yr). Occurrence of FEV1/FVC less than 0.70 after 9/11 defined incident airflow limitation. Using regression models, we assessed associations of post-9/11 blood eosinophil and neutrophil concentrations with subsequent FEV1 decline and airflow limitation, adjusted for age, race, smoking, height, WTC exposure level, weight change, and baseline lung function. Results: Accelerated FEV1 decline occurred in 12.7{\%} of participants (1,199 of 9,434), whereas post-9/11 FEV1 improvement occurred in 8.3{\%} (780 of 9,434). Higher blood eosinophil and neutrophil concentrations were each associated with accelerated FEV1 decline after adjustment for covariates (odds ratio [OR], 1.10 per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95{\%} confidence interval [CI], 1.05-1.15; and OR, 1.10 per 1,000 neutrophils/μl; 95{\%} CI, 1.05-1.15, respectively). Multivariable-adjusted linear regression models showed that a higher blood neutrophil concentration was associated with a faster rate of FEV1 decline (1.14 ml/yr decline per 1,000 neutrophils/μl; 95{\%} CI, 0.69-1.60 ml/yr; P < 0.001). Higher blood eosinophil concentrations were associated with a faster rate of FEV1 decline in ever-smokers (1.46 ml/yr decline per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95{\%} CI, 0.65-2.26 ml/yr; P < 0.001) but not in never-smokers (P for interaction = 0.004). Higher eosinophil concentrations were also associated with incident airflow limitation (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.10 per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95{\%} CI, 1.04-1.15). Compared with the expected FEV1 decline group, individuals experiencing accelerated FEV1 decline were more likely to have incident airflow limitation (adjusted OR, 4.12; 95{\%} CI, 3.30-5.14). Conclusions: Higher post-9/11 blood neutrophil and eosinophil concentrations were associated with subsequent accelerated FEV1 decline in WTC-exposed firefighters. Both higher blood eosinophil concentrations and accelerated FEV1 decline were associated with incident airflow limitation in WTC-exposed firefighters.",
keywords = "Eosinophils, Longitudinal studies, Lung injury, Neutrophils, Spirometry",
author = "Rachel Zeig-Owens and Ankura Singh and Aldrich, {Thomas K.} and Hall, {Charles B.} and Theresa Schwartz and Webber, {Mayris P.} and Cohen, {Hillel W.} and Kelly, {Kerry J.} and Anna Nolan and Prezant, {David J.} and Weiden, {Michael D.}",
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TY - JOUR

T1 - Blood leukocyte concentrations, FEV1 decline, and airflow limitation A 15-year longitudinal study of world trade center-exposed firefighters

AU - Zeig-Owens, Rachel

AU - Singh, Ankura

AU - Aldrich, Thomas K.

AU - Hall, Charles B.

AU - Schwartz, Theresa

AU - Webber, Mayris P.

AU - Cohen, Hillel W.

AU - Kelly, Kerry J.

AU - Nolan, Anna

AU - Prezant, David J.

AU - Weiden, Michael D.

PY - 2018/2/1

Y1 - 2018/2/1

N2 - Rationale: Rescue/recovery work at the World Trade Center disaster site (WTC) caused a proximate decline in lung function in Fire Department of the City of New York firefighters. A subset of this cohort experienced an accelerated rate of lung function decline over 15 years of post-September 11, 2001 (9/11) follow-up. Objectives: To determine if early postexposure blood leukocyte concentrations are biomarkers for subsequent FEV1 decline and incident airflow limitation. Methods: Individual rates of forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) change were calculated for 9,434 firefighters using 88,709 spirometric measurements taken between September 11, 2001, and September 10, 2016. We categorized FEV1 change rates into three trajectories: accelerated FEV1 decline (FEV1 loss >64 ml/yr), expected FEV1 decline (FEV1 loss between 0 and 64 ml/yr), and improved FEV1 (positive rate of change >0 ml/yr). Occurrence of FEV1/FVC less than 0.70 after 9/11 defined incident airflow limitation. Using regression models, we assessed associations of post-9/11 blood eosinophil and neutrophil concentrations with subsequent FEV1 decline and airflow limitation, adjusted for age, race, smoking, height, WTC exposure level, weight change, and baseline lung function. Results: Accelerated FEV1 decline occurred in 12.7% of participants (1,199 of 9,434), whereas post-9/11 FEV1 improvement occurred in 8.3% (780 of 9,434). Higher blood eosinophil and neutrophil concentrations were each associated with accelerated FEV1 decline after adjustment for covariates (odds ratio [OR], 1.10 per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.05-1.15; and OR, 1.10 per 1,000 neutrophils/μl; 95% CI, 1.05-1.15, respectively). Multivariable-adjusted linear regression models showed that a higher blood neutrophil concentration was associated with a faster rate of FEV1 decline (1.14 ml/yr decline per 1,000 neutrophils/μl; 95% CI, 0.69-1.60 ml/yr; P < 0.001). Higher blood eosinophil concentrations were associated with a faster rate of FEV1 decline in ever-smokers (1.46 ml/yr decline per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% CI, 0.65-2.26 ml/yr; P < 0.001) but not in never-smokers (P for interaction = 0.004). Higher eosinophil concentrations were also associated with incident airflow limitation (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.10 per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% CI, 1.04-1.15). Compared with the expected FEV1 decline group, individuals experiencing accelerated FEV1 decline were more likely to have incident airflow limitation (adjusted OR, 4.12; 95% CI, 3.30-5.14). Conclusions: Higher post-9/11 blood neutrophil and eosinophil concentrations were associated with subsequent accelerated FEV1 decline in WTC-exposed firefighters. Both higher blood eosinophil concentrations and accelerated FEV1 decline were associated with incident airflow limitation in WTC-exposed firefighters.

AB - Rationale: Rescue/recovery work at the World Trade Center disaster site (WTC) caused a proximate decline in lung function in Fire Department of the City of New York firefighters. A subset of this cohort experienced an accelerated rate of lung function decline over 15 years of post-September 11, 2001 (9/11) follow-up. Objectives: To determine if early postexposure blood leukocyte concentrations are biomarkers for subsequent FEV1 decline and incident airflow limitation. Methods: Individual rates of forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) change were calculated for 9,434 firefighters using 88,709 spirometric measurements taken between September 11, 2001, and September 10, 2016. We categorized FEV1 change rates into three trajectories: accelerated FEV1 decline (FEV1 loss >64 ml/yr), expected FEV1 decline (FEV1 loss between 0 and 64 ml/yr), and improved FEV1 (positive rate of change >0 ml/yr). Occurrence of FEV1/FVC less than 0.70 after 9/11 defined incident airflow limitation. Using regression models, we assessed associations of post-9/11 blood eosinophil and neutrophil concentrations with subsequent FEV1 decline and airflow limitation, adjusted for age, race, smoking, height, WTC exposure level, weight change, and baseline lung function. Results: Accelerated FEV1 decline occurred in 12.7% of participants (1,199 of 9,434), whereas post-9/11 FEV1 improvement occurred in 8.3% (780 of 9,434). Higher blood eosinophil and neutrophil concentrations were each associated with accelerated FEV1 decline after adjustment for covariates (odds ratio [OR], 1.10 per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.05-1.15; and OR, 1.10 per 1,000 neutrophils/μl; 95% CI, 1.05-1.15, respectively). Multivariable-adjusted linear regression models showed that a higher blood neutrophil concentration was associated with a faster rate of FEV1 decline (1.14 ml/yr decline per 1,000 neutrophils/μl; 95% CI, 0.69-1.60 ml/yr; P < 0.001). Higher blood eosinophil concentrations were associated with a faster rate of FEV1 decline in ever-smokers (1.46 ml/yr decline per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% CI, 0.65-2.26 ml/yr; P < 0.001) but not in never-smokers (P for interaction = 0.004). Higher eosinophil concentrations were also associated with incident airflow limitation (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.10 per 100 eosinophils/μl; 95% CI, 1.04-1.15). Compared with the expected FEV1 decline group, individuals experiencing accelerated FEV1 decline were more likely to have incident airflow limitation (adjusted OR, 4.12; 95% CI, 3.30-5.14). Conclusions: Higher post-9/11 blood neutrophil and eosinophil concentrations were associated with subsequent accelerated FEV1 decline in WTC-exposed firefighters. Both higher blood eosinophil concentrations and accelerated FEV1 decline were associated with incident airflow limitation in WTC-exposed firefighters.

KW - Eosinophils

KW - Longitudinal studies

KW - Lung injury

KW - Neutrophils

KW - Spirometry

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