Published in the journal JAMA Network Open by scientists from Inserm, the University of Grenoble and the CNRS, this new study highlights the effects of global warming on the health of our infants and girls, in particular.
According to a new study, inequalities between girls and boys take root before birth and depending on the climatic context. Published in the journal JAMA Network Open , this shows that temperatures would indeed have harmful effects on newborns depending on their gender. Thus, baby girls who have been exposed to too extreme a climate – very high or very low temperatures – during their mother’s pregnancy have reduced respiratory capacity several weeks after delivery.
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Conducted by scientists from Inserm, the University of Grenoble and the CNRS on 343 women and their children, this new study was carried out in the said region where the lowest temperatures are below 1 degree and the highest are beyond 24 degrees. Its goal ? Analyze air pollution on infant health. Six to seven weeks after birth, the researchers thus studied the volume of current air, the respiratory rate as well as the volume of air remaining in the lungs after a breath.
Not pathological in nature
Result: the differences between girls and boys are clear. Female babies exposed from the second trimester of pregnancy to extreme temperatures have less air in their lungs while their respiratory rate is higher. Conversely, temperatures do not seem to affect the health of baby boys in any way. “The variations observed are not of a pathological nature and do not make it possible to predict a respiratory disorder subsequently, but the various measurements of pulmonary function carried out all converge towards an association in the little girl between exposure in utero to high or low temperatures. and poorer lung performance in newborns”, completed Johanna Lepeule, at the origin of the study, as reported by several media.
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A new analysis should appear soon. This time, it will be conducted on children aged 3 to 8, with the aim of determining whether these alterations persist in the long term and are irreversible. In the meantime, Johanna Lepeule nevertheless raises an important point: “the results underpin the importance of developing public policies to protect pregnant women and their children from extreme temperatures, particularly in the current context of global warming”.