The ESCAPE study investigated long-term effects on human health of exposure to air pollution in Europe. The background is that current estimates of the European health impact of especially fine particles in the air are large. However, available estimates are primarily based on exposure response relationships established in studies from North America. There is an urgent need to perform studies in Europe on recent and current exposures, and to use refined exposure assessment tools.

For published or accepted papers of the ESCAPE study look under Publications.

The overall strategy was to efficiently utilize health and confounder data from European cohort studies. To these studies, air pollution exposure assessment will be applied at the individual home address level of participants in each of these studies.

The objectives of the ESCAPE study were:

to develop a flexible methodology for assessment of long-term population exposure to air pollution focused primarily on fine particles, particle composition, and nitrogen oxides.
to apply the exposure assessment methodology on existing cohort studies of mortality and chronic disease in Europe that have been selected based on their potential to quantify relationships between long-term exposure and health response precisely.
specifically, to investigate exposure-response relationships and thresholds for (a) adverse perinatal health outcomes, and development of diseases such as asthma in children; (b) respiratory disease endpoints in adults; (c) cardiovascular disease endpoints in adults; (d) all-cause and cause-specific mortality, and cancer incidence.
to develop a database for quantitative estimates of the health impacts of long-term exposure to air pollution for all of these health endpoints for the European population


1.         Beelen R, Raaschou-Nielsen O, Stafoggia M, Andersen ZJ, Weinmayr G, Hoffmann B, et al. Effects of long-term exposure to air pollution on natural-cause mortality: an analysis of 22 European cohorts within the multicentre ESCAPE project. Lancet. 2014 Mar 1;383(9919):785-95.

2.         Cesaroni G, Forastiere F, Stafoggia M, Andersen ZJ, Badaloni C, Beelen R, et al. Long term exposure to ambient air pollution and incidence of acute coronary events: prospective cohort study and meta-analysis in 11 European cohorts from the ESCAPE Project. BMJ. 2014;348:f7412.

3.         Raaschou-Nielsen O, Andersen ZJ, Beelen R, Samoli E, Stafoggia M, Weinmayr G, et al. Air pollution and lung cancer incidence in 17 European cohorts: prospective analyses from the European Study of Cohorts for Air Pollution Effects (ESCAPE). Lancet Oncol. 2013 Aug;14(9):813-22.

4.         Pedersen M, Giorgis-Allemand L, Bernard C, Aguilera I, Andersen AM, Ballester F, et al. Ambient air pollution and low birthweight: a European cohort study (ESCAPE). Lancet Respir Med. 2013 Nov;1(9):695-704.

5.         Eeftens M, Beelen R, de Hoogh K, Bellander T, Cesaroni G, Cirach M, et al. Development of Land Use Regression models for PM(2.5), PM(2.5) absorbance, PM(10) and PM(coarse) in 20 European study areas; results of the ESCAPE project. Environ Sci Technol. 2012 Oct 16;46(20):11195-205.