UC Irvine epidemiologist Dr. Ralph J. Delfino and his team have been awarded $3.2 million to study the effects of air pollution on high-risk elderly people living in the Los Angeles basin. The grant is from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. The five-year study will be among the first to use repeated measurements to analyze the relation between certain pollutants, particularly ultrafine particles from traffic, and genome-wide gene expression patterns in blood cells. The work will contribute to the knowledge and methods needed to establish exposure limits to protect the public’s health, by addressing questions about which chemical components and sources of air pollution have the greatest potential for toxicity throughout the body. “I’m enthusiastic about the potential applications of this approach,” said Delfino, associate professor of epidemiology.