EVANSVILLE, Ind. (CNN) – A new study shows air pollution breathed in by pregnant women may reach their unborn children.
Researchers at Hasselt University in Belgium found black carbon in the placentas of 25 non-smoking women after they gave birth, leading them to believe those particles may have also reached the fetuses.
A link between air pollution and miscarriages, premature births, and low birth weights has already been established.
Scientists previously believed those particles could not cross through the placenta and impact unborn children directly.
Additional research is needed to know if they can travel from the placenta to the fetus.
A similar study last year found pollutants in the placentas of five women in the United Kingdom.
The pollutants found in the new study are the type created by the burning of fossil fuels.
This story was originally published on September 18, 2019