Special Issue "Neighborhoods and Cardiovascular Risk"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 August 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Kiarri N. Kershaw
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Preventive Medicine, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, 680 North Lake Shore Drive Suite 1400, Chicago, IL 60611, USA
Interests: racial/ethnic residential segregation and cardiovascular disease risk; social environment and health; psychosocial stress and health; systems science approaches to understanding eating decisions
Dr. Sandra Albrecht
E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, 722 West 168th Street, Room 703, New York, NY 10032, USA
Interests: socio-cultural and environmental risk factors for obesity and diabetes; Latino and immigrant health; nutrition-related health disparities; community-based healthcare
Dr. Tiffany M. Powell-Wiley
E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
1. Social Determinants of Obesity and Cardiovascular Risk Laboratory, Division of Intramural Research, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, NIH, 10 Center Drive, Room 5-5332, MSC 1454, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA
2. Intramural Research Program, National Institute on Minority and Health Disparities, NIH, 10 Center Drive, Room 5-5332, MSC 1454, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA
Interests: neighborhood social environment and cardiovascular risk factors; neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation and obesity; systems science approaches in development of multilevel physical activity interventions; biologic markers of chronic stress from adverse environmental conditions
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are organizing a Special Issue on the impact of the neighborhood environment on cardiovascular disease risk in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (IJERPH). This peer-reviewed, scientific journal publishes research articles and communications in the interdisciplinary area of environmental health sciences and public health. For detailed information on the journal, we refer you to https://0-www-mdpi-com.brum.beds.ac.uk/journal/ijerph.  

For nearly two decades, researchers have been examining the impact of neighborhood physical and social environments on cardiovascular disease risk. Studies initially focused on neighborhood socioeconomic disadvantage, but they have since expanded to include a wide range of more specific neighborhood indicators, including food environment, greenspaces, walkability, crime and safety, and social cohesion. However, despite numerous epidemiologic studies demonstrating a relationship between neighborhood conditions and cardiovascular disease risk factors and outcomes, important gaps in the evidence remain. For example, studies that leverage planned and natural experiments or that utilize other longitudinal and experimental/quasi-experimental research designs are important for improving causal inference. More information is also needed regarding which aspects of the neighborhood environment impact subpopulations at high risk for cardiovascular disease and contribute to health disparities. In addition, utilizing systems sciences approaches to understanding neighborhood effects on cardiovascular disease risk may help researchers identify the most salient targets on which to intervene. This approach may also help identify potential unintended consequences of new policies. As these examples highlight, more well-designed research in this area is needed to inform policy and multilevel interventions in order to improve population health and reduce health inequities. 

This Special Issue will feature new studies that advance our understanding of the ways in which where people live and spend time influence their risk of cardiovascular disease. To this end, we encourage contributions that measure the neighborhood in traditional ways, as well as those that seek alternative ways of thinking about place (e.g., activity spaces). This Special Issue is open to original research, review articles, short reports, methodological papers, and meta-analyses relating neighborhoods to cardiovascular disease risk. The listed keywords suggest a few of the many possible subject areas.

Dr. Kiarri N. Kershaw
Dr. Sandra Albrecht
Dr. Tiffany M. Powell-Wiley
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Neighborhood
  • Activity space
  • Health geography
  • Food environment
  • Built environment
  • Residential segregation
  • Crime and safety
  • Greenspace
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Diet or eating behaviors
  • Physical activity

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Article
Racial Residential Segregation and Race Differences in Ideal Cardiovascular Health among Young Men
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 7755; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18157755 - 22 Jul 2021
Viewed by 230
Abstract
Background: Race disparities in cardiovascular disease (CVD) related morbidity and mortality are evident among men. While previous studies show health in young adulthood and racial residential segregation (RRS) are important factors for CVD risk, these factors have not been widely studied in male [...] Read more.
Background: Race disparities in cardiovascular disease (CVD) related morbidity and mortality are evident among men. While previous studies show health in young adulthood and racial residential segregation (RRS) are important factors for CVD risk, these factors have not been widely studied in male populations. We sought to examine race differences in ideal cardiovascular health (CVH) among young men (ages 24–34) and whether RRS influenced this association. Methods: We used cross-sectional data from young men who participated in Wave IV (2008) of the National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent to Adult Health (N = 5080). The dichotomous outcome, achieving ideal CVH, was defined as having ≥4 of the American Heart Association’s Life’s Simple 7 targets. Race (Black/White) and RRS (proportion of White residents in census tract) were the independent variables. Descriptive and multivariate analyses were conducted. Results: Young Black men had lower odds of achieving ideal CVH (OR = 0.67, 95% CI = 0.49, 0.92) than young White men. However, RRS did not have a significant effect on race differences in ideal CVH until the proportion of White residents was ≥55%. Conclusions: Among young Black and White men, RRS is an important factor to consider when seeking to understand CVH and reduce future cardiovascular risk. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neighborhoods and Cardiovascular Risk)
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Article
Neighborhood Environment Associates with Trimethylamine-N-Oxide (TMAO) as a Cardiovascular Risk Marker
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(8), 4296; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18084296 - 18 Apr 2021
Viewed by 665
Abstract
Background: Neighborhoods and the microbiome are linked to cardiovascular disease (CVD), yet investigations to identify microbiome-related factors at neighborhood levels have not been widely investigated. We sought to explore relationships between neighborhood deprivation index (NDI) and the microbial metabolite, trimethylamine-N-oxide. We hypothesized that [...] Read more.
Background: Neighborhoods and the microbiome are linked to cardiovascular disease (CVD), yet investigations to identify microbiome-related factors at neighborhood levels have not been widely investigated. We sought to explore relationships between neighborhood deprivation index (NDI) and the microbial metabolite, trimethylamine-N-oxide. We hypothesized that inflammatory markers and dietary intake would be mediators of the relationship. Methods: African-American adults at risk for CVD living in the Washington, DC area were recruited to participate in a cross-sectional community-based study. US census-based neighborhood deprivation index (NDI) measures (at the census-tract level) were determined. Serum samples were analyzed for CVD risk factors, cytokines, and the microbial metabolite, trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO). Self-reported dietary intake based on food groups was collected. Results: Study participants (n = 60) were predominantly female (93.3%), with a mean (SD) age of 60.83 (+/−10.52) years. Mean (SD) NDI was −1.54 (2.94), and mean (SD) TMAO level was 4.99 (9.65) µmol/L. Adjusting for CVD risk factors and BMI, NDI was positively associated with TMAO (β = 0.31, p = 0.02). Using mediation analysis, the relationship between NDI and TMAO was significantly mediated by TNF-α (60.15%) and interleukin)-1 β (IL; 49.96%). When controlling for clustering within neighborhoods, the NDI-TMAO association was no longer significant (β = 5.11, p = 0.11). However, the association between NDI and IL-1 β (β = 0.04, p = 0.004) and TNF-α (β = 0.17, p = 0.003) remained. Neither NDI nor TMAO was significantly associated with daily dietary intake. Conclusion and Relevance: Among a small sample of African-American adults at risk for CVD, there was a significant positive relationship with NDI and TMAO mediated by inflammation. These hypothesis-generating results are initial and need to be confirmed in larger studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neighborhoods and Cardiovascular Risk)
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Article
Positive Association of Physical Activity with Both Objective and Perceived Measures of the Neighborhood Environment among Older Adults: The Aichi Workers’ Cohort Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(21), 7971; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17217971 - 29 Oct 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 831
Abstract
We examined the association between objective and perceived neighborhood characteristics and self-reported leisure-time physical activity (PA) in older Japanese residents living in areas ranging from metropolitan to rural in 2016. Objective measures used were walkability and the numbers of parks/green spaces and sports [...] Read more.
We examined the association between objective and perceived neighborhood characteristics and self-reported leisure-time physical activity (PA) in older Japanese residents living in areas ranging from metropolitan to rural in 2016. Objective measures used were walkability and the numbers of parks/green spaces and sports facilities within 500 or 1000 m of subjects’ homes, calculated using geographic information systems. Subjective measures were the subjects’ perceptions of their neighborhoods, assessed using a structured questionnaire. All variables were divided into three groups, and the lowest tertile was used as the reference. We assessed the location and frequency of strolling or brisk walking, moderate-intensity PA, and vigorous-intensity PA (sports) using a self-reported questionnaire and defined as performing a certain type of PA 3–4 times/week as a habit. Living in a neighborhood in the highest tertile for walkability and number of parks/green spaces as well as perception of having good access to recreational facilities, observing others exercising and the presence of walkable sidewalks was associated with walking and sports habits (multivariable odds ratios (ORs): 1.33–2.46, all p < 0.05). Interestingly, objective measures of PA-friendly environmental features were inversely associated with moderate-intensity PA habits, potentially because moderate-intensity PA consisted predominantly of gardening. In conclusion, living in an environment supportive of PA, whether objectively or subjectively measured, is related to leisure-time PA habits among older Japanese adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neighborhoods and Cardiovascular Risk)
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