National Institute for Environmental Studies
The fourth five-year plan(2016-2020)/ Health and Environmental Safety Research Program

Project 6

Research project on atmospheric processes, toxicity, and health effects of air pollutants including PM2.5

Overview of Project 6

Rapid economic growth in East Asia has resulted in a marked increase in energy consumption, leading to increased emission of air pollutants. High concentrations of PM2.5 have been reported in Japan, and their adverse health effects are now a major public concern. Based on a report published by the Central Environment Council, Japan, the main objectives for this project are determined to
1) understand the atmospheric processes of air pollutants, and develop and propose pollution control plans and mitigation strategies;
2) collect evidence of the adverse health effects associated with the mass and chemical compositions of PM2.5 and elucidate the current status of these adverse health effects in highly susceptible populations; and
3) construct alert systems for high concentrations of PM2.5.
To achieve these objectives, we are developing an improved air quality model that incorporates data on chemical reaction processes obtained from laboratory chamber experiments, updated emission inventories, and comparisons of model data with observational data. With the improved air quality model, source apportionment studies are conducted to provide data for the development of advanced pollution control plans and alert systems are constructed for high concentrations of PM2.5. We are also conducting in vitro toxicity studies to find and categorize toxic chemicals contained in PM2.5, and epidemiological studies to elucidate the association between the various chemicals contained in PM2.5 and adverse health effects, especially within highly susceptible populations such as people with cardiovascular disease or pregnant women.

PJ6 Members

Project leader: Akinori Takami (Center for Regional Environmental Research)
Center for Health and Environmental Risk Research
 Akiko Furuyama, Yuji Fujitani, Shin Yamazaki, Takehiro Michikawa, Seishiro Hirano
Center for Regional Environmental Research
 Seiji Sugata, Tatsuya Nagashima, Yu Morino, Daisuke Goto, Satoru Chatani, Kei Sato, Atsushi Shimizu,
 Yoshinori Kondo, Ayako Yoshino, Ying Li*, Hayasaki Masamitsu*
Center for Environmental Measurement and Analysis
 Akihiro Fushimi
(*: Researcher who belonged to the past)


PJ6 Sub-study

  • A study for an emission source analysis and a pollution control planning
  • A study for adverse effects on human health caused by air pollutants in Japan