Biomonitoring—an Effective Tool for Air Pollution Assessment (2nd Edition)

A special issue of Atmosphere (ISSN 2073-4433). This special issue belongs to the section "Air Quality".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2024 | Viewed by 4162

Special Issue Editor


E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Chemistry for Energy, Environment and Health, University of Strasbourg/CNRS (ICPEES UMR 7515), Rue Becquerel 25, CEDEX 3, 67087 Strasbourg, France
Interests: air quality; passive sampling; organic pollutants; aerosols; biomonitoring
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

After successfully launching the first volume of this Special Issue (“Biomonitoring—an Effective Tool for Air Pollution Assessment“: https://www.mdpi.com/journal/atmosphere/special_issues/biomonitoring_pollution), we have decided to expand our Special Issue into a second volume to include more related research.

Air pollution involves a variety of contaminants issued from natural and synthetic sources and formed through the photochemical transformation process, including metals, volatile and non-volatile organic compounds, particulate matter, and gaseous products. Each of these can be detrimental to human health and the environment. The evaluation of air pollution is a challenge due to its importance for human health and the environment in general. The direct measurement of environmental contaminants needs a specific sampling method as well as a precise analytical procedure in order to collect and detect the total amount of emitted pollutants. Although the use of active sampling for environmental monitoring was the method of choice for many years due to its accuracy and efficiency, it suffers from many drawbacks, leading to the development and use of passive samplers. Among all passive samplers, the use of natural species remains the most efficient due to their availability, efficiency, and sensitivity to accumulated pollutants.

In this Special Issue, reviews or original research papers devoted to the use of biomonitors for the evaluation of air pollution can be submitted for potential publication.

All types of biomonitors (mosses, trees, needles, tree barks, snails, bees, honey, etc.) and pollutants (metals, volatile organic compounds, organic pollutants including POPS, pesticides, etc.) can be considered in terms of methodology, analytical development, long-duration studies, surveys, comparisons with other techniques (like active sampling), comparisons between biomonitors, etc.

We look forward to receiving your submission.

Dr. Maurice Millet
Guest Editor

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 submissions that pass pre-check are 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. Atmosphere is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly 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 2400 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

  • biomonitoring
  • air quality
  • metals
  • semi-volatiles organic compounds
  • volatile organic compounds
  • needles
  • snails
  • mosses
  • tree barks

Published Papers (4 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

15 pages, 661 KiB  
Article
Comparison of Exposure to Pb and Mn Levels by Using Environmental Personal Monitors and Biomarkers in Relation to Cognitive and Motor Function
by Miguel Santibáñez, Laura Ruiz-Azcona, Andrea Expósito, Bohdana Markiv and Ignacio Fernández-Olmo
Atmosphere 2024, 15(3), 350; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos15030350 - 13 Mar 2024
Viewed by 722
Abstract
We conducted a cross-sectional study of 130 participants living near a ferromanganese alloy plant, analyzing Pb and Mn exposure by biomarkers (blood, hair, and fingernails) and particulate matter personal environmental monitors (PEMs). Cognitive and motor function were assessed by five and three tests, [...] Read more.
We conducted a cross-sectional study of 130 participants living near a ferromanganese alloy plant, analyzing Pb and Mn exposure by biomarkers (blood, hair, and fingernails) and particulate matter personal environmental monitors (PEMs). Cognitive and motor function were assessed by five and three tests, respectively. Mean differences (MDs) adjusted for age, sex, and study level were determined. In addition, MDs for Pb were adjusted for Mn levels and vice versa. Medians of 9.14 µg/L, 149.04 ng/g, and 96.04 ng/g were obtained for blood, scalp hair, and fingernails Pb levels, respectively. Regarding PEMs, median Pb levels were 6.56 ng/m3 for the fine fraction and, for the coarse fraction, they were below the limit of detection in 97% of participants. Exposure to Pb at low levels was not associated with worse cognitive function. In comparison, exposure to high levels of Mn was associated with worse cognitive function at least in the domains evaluated through Stroop, Digit Span, and Verbal Fluency tests. In terms of motor function, our results suggest that even the currently low Pb levels may have negative health effects on dynamometer-determined strength—adjusted MD on dominant hand = −2.68; 95%CI (−4.85 to −0.51), p = 0.016. Further studies should investigate this association. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

0 pages, 9862 KiB  
Article
Moss as a Biomonitor to Identify Atmospheric Deposition of Minor and Trace Elements in Macedonia
by Robert Šajn, Katerina Bačeva Andonovska, Trajče Stafilov and Lambe Barandovski
Atmosphere 2024, 15(3), 297; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos15030297 - 28 Feb 2024
Viewed by 700
Abstract
The present work was carried out to obtain and highlight the fifth comprehensive baseline dataset on atmospheric deposition of trace elements and to assess air quality in Macedonia. In the period from August to September 2020, a total of 72 moss samples were [...] Read more.
The present work was carried out to obtain and highlight the fifth comprehensive baseline dataset on atmospheric deposition of trace elements and to assess air quality in Macedonia. In the period from August to September 2020, a total of 72 moss samples were collected in accessible areas in the country. The content of 28 elements (Ag, Al, B, Ba, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Ga, Hg, K, La, Mg, Mn, Mo, Na, Ni, P, Pb, S, Sb, Sc, Sr, Ti, U, and Zn) was determined using inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry. Based on the data obtained on the content of the elements, a factor analysis was carried out to identify and characterise different sources of pollution. In addition, distribution maps were created for all elements to show the regions most affected by anthropogenic activities. The survey conducted in 2020 has shown that air pollution with potentially toxic elements (PTEs) has slightly decreased compared to the results of the previous survey from 2015. This is due to the fact that, despite the operation of all mining and smelting facilities with the same capacity, government regulations for the installation of cleaning systems and additional regulations to reduce pollution have been introduced in the last five years. Nevertheless, the fact remains that the highest anthropogenic air pollution with PTEs is still caused by the operation of the ferronickel smelter in Kavadarci (Ni and Cr) in the southern part and by the lead and zinc mines in Probištip, Makedonska Kamenica, and Kriva Palanka in the eastern part of the country (Cd, Pb, and Zn). Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

15 pages, 3142 KiB  
Article
Assessing Environmental Justice at the Urban Scale: The Contribution of Lichen Biomonitoring for Overcoming the Dichotomy between Proximity-Based and Distribution-Based Approaches
by Tania Contardo and Stefano Loppi
Atmosphere 2024, 15(3), 275; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos15030275 - 25 Feb 2024
Viewed by 1217
Abstract
In this study, we tested the use of lichen biomonitoring techniques for the assessment of air quality disparities at the urban scale. We based our evaluation on the results of a previous lichen biomonitoring study carried out in Milan (Northern Italy), which estimates [...] Read more.
In this study, we tested the use of lichen biomonitoring techniques for the assessment of air quality disparities at the urban scale. We based our evaluation on the results of a previous lichen biomonitoring study carried out in Milan (Northern Italy), which estimates the contamination by potentially toxic elements (PTEs) and its distribution over the area, also providing an evaluation of the main emission sources. Therefore, we used the traditional methodologies for environmental justice assessment: the proximity-based and the distribution-based approaches. The workflow we propose is a data-driven selection of emission sources that contributes to overcoming the dichotomy between the two approaches and is now widely debated in the scientific community. A socio-economic deprivation index was elaborated for each census unit of Milan city and then related to the proximity of the emission sources previously selected. The results suggested that in the surrounding of industries and railways, the deprivation is higher, while the proximity of main roads is inhabited by wealthier populations. The distribution-based approach was run through a quantile regression analysis, and the outcome indicated that among the wealthier groups, an increase in contamination is followed by an increase in socio-economic deprivation, whilst among the deprived groups, people with greater economic opportunities tend, however, to live in worse air quality conditions due to the proximity of communication routes. This study poses the potential to review the classical methods of EJ assessment, providing a reliable workflow applicable in urban areas—the most vulnerable in terms of air quality disparities in the present and in the future. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

16 pages, 1200 KiB  
Article
Assessment of Atmospheric Pollution by Selected Elements and PAHs during 12-Month Active Biomonitoring of Terrestrial Mosses
by Małgorzata Rajfur, Anca-Iulia Stoica, Paweł Świsłowski, Wolfgang Stach, Falko Ziegenbalg and Eva Maria Mattausch
Atmosphere 2024, 15(1), 102; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos15010102 - 14 Jan 2024
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1096
Abstract
Biomonitoring studies are most often used in short-term study periods to quickly obtain information on the state/quality of the environment and its pollution levels. Performing long-term surveys involves a prolonged wait for the result and is therefore not often used and is rather [...] Read more.
Biomonitoring studies are most often used in short-term study periods to quickly obtain information on the state/quality of the environment and its pollution levels. Performing long-term surveys involves a prolonged wait for the result and is therefore not often used and is rather associated with classical air quality monitoring. The aim of this study was to evaluate atmospheric air pollution by selecting 16 elements and 16 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons conducted as part of a 12-month ‘moss-bag’ technique of an active biomonitoring method with the use of three moss species: Pleurozium schreberi, Sphagnum fallax, and Dicranum polysetum. All analytes were determined by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS). As a result of the experiment, it was found that the concentrations of all elements increased with time of exposure. The total sum of them in D. polysetum moss was 30% and 60% more than in P. schreberi and S. fallax, respectively, which allows us to consider this species’ broader use in active biomonitoring. For PAHs analysis, the best biomonitor in time was P. schreberi, which accumulated 25% and 55% more than S. fallax and D. polysetum, respectively. In this one-year study, most organic compounds accumulated between 5 and 6 months of exposure, depending on the species. Given the low-cost nature of active biomonitoring, it should be concluded that mosses could be used in long-term monitoring of the quality of the atmospheric aerosol in terms of element and organic compound concentration in air. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop