Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution

A special issue of Toxics (ISSN 2305-6304). This special issue belongs to the section "Air Pollution and Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (28 February 2023) | Viewed by 18462

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Guest Editor
Environmental Pollution Control Laboratory, Department of Chemistry, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, GR-54124 Thessaloniki, Greece
Interests: environmental chemistry; environmental analysis; atmospheric pollution; outdoor and indoor air quality; air sampling; health impact assessment; particulate matter; atmospheric aerosols; indoor air pollution; chemical characterization of airborne particulate matter
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Ambient particulate matter (PM) is associated with short-term and long-term health effects. PM contains precursors of reactive oxygen species (H2O2, OH, O2-, etc.), which may deplete lung antioxidants, leading to oxidative stress, inflammation, oxidation of cellular lipids and proteins, and DNA damage. The oxidative potential (OP) of PM (i.e., the ability of particles to generate ROS) integrates various biologically relevant properties, including size, surface, and chemical composition; therefore, it may provide a more health-based exposure measure than PM mass alone and may be an improved measure of the biologically effective dose that drives adverse health effects. Several assays with different sensitivities to ROS generating compounds have been developed to quantify the OP of PM, with the acellular dithiothreitol (DTT) assay being the most used procedure because it is cheap, easy to operate, and has high repeatability. Generally, the term of OPDTT implies the chemical reactivity and potential toxicity of PM constituents regarding their oxidative properties when considering PM exposure and the associated health effects. PM components identified as DTT-active are quinones, humic-like substances (HULIS), and dissolved transition metals. It is still unknown which other PM components are active in the DTT assay. In addition, the apportionment of PM components responsible for DTT consumption has not been fully elucidated due to the complex nature of PM compositions and potential interactions among PM components. The aim of this Special Issue is to gain more insight into the redox-active PM components. In this Special Issue, original research articles and reviews are welcome. Research areas may include (but are not limited to) the following themes: οxidative potential of particulate matter (PM) in relation to key PM components.

I look forward to receiving your contributions.

Dr. Besis Athanasios
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • air pollution
  • particulate matter (PM)
  • oxidative stress
  • DTT assay
  • HULIS
  • metals
  • quinones

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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13 pages, 137524 KiB  
Article
Chemical Gas Telemetry System Based on Multispectral Infrared Imaging
by Kun Li, Shaoli Duan, Lingling Pang, Weilai Li, Zhixiong Yang, Yaohang Hu and Chunchao Yu
Toxics 2023, 11(1), 83; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11010083 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1929
Abstract
Environmental monitoring, public safety, safe production, and other areas all benefit greatly from the use of gas detection technologies. The infrared image of a gas could be used to determine its type from a long distance in gas detection. The infrared image can [...] Read more.
Environmental monitoring, public safety, safe production, and other areas all benefit greatly from the use of gas detection technologies. The infrared image of a gas could be used to determine its type from a long distance in gas detection. The infrared image can show the spatial distribution of the gas cloud and the background, allowing for long-distance and non-contact detection during safety production and hazardous chemical accident rescue. In this study, a gas detection system based on multispectral infrared imaging is devised, which can detect a variety of gases and determine the types of gas by separating the infrared radiation. It is made up of an imaging optical system, an uncooled focal plane detector, a filter controller, and a data gathering and processing system. The resolution of the infrared image is 640 × 512 and the working band of the system is 6.5~15 μm. The system can detect traces of pollutants in ambient air or gas clouds at higher concentrations. Ammonia, sulfur hexafluoride, methane, sulfur dioxide, and dimethyl methyl phosphonate were all successfully detected in real time. Ammonia clouds could be detected at a distance of 1124.5 m. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution)
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14 pages, 1707 KiB  
Article
Size-Resolved Redox Activity and Cytotoxicity of Water-Soluble Urban Atmospheric Particulate Matter: Assessing Contributions from Chemical Components
by Athanasios Besis, Maria Pia Romano, Eleni Serafeim, Anna Avgenikou, Athanasios Kouras, Maria Giulia Lionetto, Maria Rachele Guascito, Anna Rita De Bartolomeo, Maria Elena Giordano, Annarosa Mangone, Daniele Contini and Constantini Samara
Toxics 2023, 11(1), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11010059 - 7 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1855
Abstract
Throughout the cold and the warm periods of 2020, chemical and toxicological characterization of the water-soluble fraction of size segregated particulate matter (PM) (<0.49, 0.49–0.95, 0.95–1.5, 1.5–3.0, 3.0–7.2 and >7.2 μm) was conducted in the urban agglomeration of Thessaloniki, northern Greece. Chemical analysis [...] Read more.
Throughout the cold and the warm periods of 2020, chemical and toxicological characterization of the water-soluble fraction of size segregated particulate matter (PM) (<0.49, 0.49–0.95, 0.95–1.5, 1.5–3.0, 3.0–7.2 and >7.2 μm) was conducted in the urban agglomeration of Thessaloniki, northern Greece. Chemical analysis of the water-soluble PM fraction included water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC), humic-like substances (HULIS), and trace elements (V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Cd and Pb). The bulk (sum of all size fractions) concentrations of HULIS were 2.5 ± 0.5 and 1.2 ± 0.3 μg m−3, for the cold and warm sampling periods, respectively with highest values in the <0.49 μm particle size fraction. The total HULIS-C/WSOC ratio ranged from 17 to 26% for all sampling periods, confirming that HULIS are a significant part of WSOC. The most abundant water-soluble metals were Fe, Zn, Cu, and Mn. The oxidative PM activity was measured abiotically using the dithiothreitol (DTT) assay. In vitro cytotoxic responses were investigated using mitochondrial dehydrogenase (MTT). A significant positive correlation was found between OPmDTT, WSOC, HULIS and the MTT cytotoxicity of PM. Multiple Linear Regression (MLR) showed a good relationship between OPMDTT, HULIS and Cu. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution)
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16 pages, 1860 KiB  
Article
Ultrafine Particles Issued from Gasoline-Fuels and Biofuel Surrogates Combustion: A Comparative Study of the Physicochemical and In Vitro Toxicological Effects
by Ana Teresa Juárez-Facio, Tiphaine Rogez-Florent, Clémence Méausoone, Clément Castilla, Mélanie Mignot, Christine Devouge-Boyer, Hélène Lavanant, Carlos Afonso, Christophe Morin, Nadine Merlet-Machour, Laurence Chevalier, François-Xavier Ouf, Cécile Corbière, Jérôme Yon, Jean-Marie Vaugeois and Christelle Monteil
Toxics 2023, 11(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11010021 - 26 Dec 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2110
Abstract
Gasoline emissions contain high levels of pollutants, including particulate matter (PM), which are associated with several health outcomes. Moreover, due to the depletion of fossil fuels, biofuels represent an attractive alternative, particularly second-generation biofuels (B2G) derived from lignocellulosic biomass. Unfortunately, compared to the [...] Read more.
Gasoline emissions contain high levels of pollutants, including particulate matter (PM), which are associated with several health outcomes. Moreover, due to the depletion of fossil fuels, biofuels represent an attractive alternative, particularly second-generation biofuels (B2G) derived from lignocellulosic biomass. Unfortunately, compared to the abundant literature on diesel and gasoline emissions, relatively few studies are devoted to alternative fuels and their health effects. This study aimed to compare the adverse effects of gasoline and B2G emissions on human bronchial epithelial cells. We characterized the emissions generated by propane combustion (CAST1), gasoline Surrogate, and B2G consisting of Surrogate blended with anisole (10%) (S+10A) or ethanol (10%) (S+10E). To study the cellular effects, BEAS-2B cells were cultured at air-liquid interface for seven days and exposed to different emissions. Cell viability, oxidative stress, inflammation, and xenobiotic metabolism were measured. mRNA expression analysis was significantly modified by the Surrogate S+10A and S+10E emissions, especially CYP1A1 and CYP1B1. Inflammation markers, IL-6 and IL-8, were mainly downregulated doubtless due to the PAHs content on PM. Overall, these results demonstrated that ultrafine particles generated from biofuels Surrogates had a toxic effect at least similar to that observed with a gasoline substitute (Surrogate), involving probably different toxicity pathways. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution)
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13 pages, 530 KiB  
Article
Optimization of Cancer Risk Assessment Models for PM2.5-Bound PAHs: Application in Jingzhong, Shanxi, China
by Hongxue Qi, Ying Liu, Lihong Li and Bingqing Zhao
Toxics 2022, 10(12), 761; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10120761 - 7 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1225
Abstract
The accurate evaluation of the carcinogenic risk of PM2.5-bound polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is crucial because of the teratogenic, carcinogenic, and mutagenic effects of PAHs. The best model out of six models was selected across three highly used categories in recent [...] Read more.
The accurate evaluation of the carcinogenic risk of PM2.5-bound polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is crucial because of the teratogenic, carcinogenic, and mutagenic effects of PAHs. The best model out of six models was selected across three highly used categories in recent years, including the USEPA-recommended inhalation risk (Model I), inhalation carcinogen unit risk (Models IIA–IID), and three exposure pathways (inhalation, dermal, and oral) (Model III). Model I was found to be superior to the other models, and its predicted risk values were in accordance with the thresholds of PM2.5 and benzo[a]pyrene in ambient-air-quality standards. Models IIA and III overestimated the risk of cancer compared to the actual cancer incidence in the local population. Model IID can replace Models IIB and IIC as these models exhibited no statistically significant differences between each other. Furthermore, the exposure parameters were optimized for Model I and significant differences were observed with respect to country and age. However, the gender difference was not statistically significant. In conclusion, Model I is recommended as the more suitable model, but in assessing cancer risk in the future, the exposure parameters must be appropriate for each country. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution)
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18 pages, 3667 KiB  
Article
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in the Snow Cover in the City of Tyumen (Western Siberia, Russia)
by Dmitriy Moskovchenko, Roman Pozhitkov, Evgeny Lodygin and Marina Toptygina
Toxics 2022, 10(12), 743; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10120743 - 30 Nov 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1225
Abstract
Some of Russia’s large industrial cities are sources of hazardous contamination in the environment. Tyumen is one of the most rapidly developing cities in Siberia due to oil and gas extraction in the northern Tyumen Region. Concentrations of 14 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH)s [...] Read more.
Some of Russia’s large industrial cities are sources of hazardous contamination in the environment. Tyumen is one of the most rapidly developing cities in Siberia due to oil and gas extraction in the northern Tyumen Region. Concentrations of 14 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH)s deposited with the particulate matter (PM) of snow in the city of Tyumen were determined by liquid chromatography. In the background area, the rate of atmospheric particulate deposition was shown to be low, and the mean total content of 14 PAHs had a value of 6.2 ng L−1, which is lower than many unpolluted areas on Earth. In the city of Tyumen, the mean content of PM was five times higher and the mean total content of 14 PAHs was twenty times higher as compared to the background. The contents of chrysene, benzo(k)fluoranthene, and benzo(a)pyrene were increased by multiples of 78, 77, and 32, respectively. The rates of ∑14 PAH deposition with airborne PM over the winter ranged from 1.1 to 65.5 μg m−2. Calculations of BaP toxic equivalent showed maximal toxicity within the transport zone. Both analysis of spatial distribution and diagnostic ratios showed that the PAHs were mainly from coal combustion and vehicle emissions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution)
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24 pages, 2296 KiB  
Article
Analysis on Spatio-Temporal Evolution and Influencing Factors of Air Quality Index (AQI) in China
by Renyi Yang and Changbiao Zhong
Toxics 2022, 10(12), 712; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10120712 - 22 Nov 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3842
Abstract
After the reform and opening up, China’s economy has developed rapidly. However, environmental problems have gradually emerged, the top of which is air pollution. We have used the following methods: In view of the shortcomings of the current spatio-temporal evolution analysis of the [...] Read more.
After the reform and opening up, China’s economy has developed rapidly. However, environmental problems have gradually emerged, the top of which is air pollution. We have used the following methods: In view of the shortcomings of the current spatio-temporal evolution analysis of the Air Quality Index (AQI) that is not detailed to the county level and the lack of analysis of its underlying causes, this study collects the AQI of all counties in China from 2014 to 2021, and uses spatial autocorrelation and other analysis methods to deeply analyze the spatio-temporal evolution characteristic. Based on the provincial panel data, the spatial econometric model is used to explore its influencing factors and spillover effects. The research results show that: (1) From 2014 to 2021, the AQI of all counties in China showed obvious spatial agglomeration characteristics, and counties in central and western Xinjiang, as well as Beijing, Tianjin, and Hebei, were high-value agglomeration areas; (2) the change trend of the AQI value also has obvious spatial autocorrelation, and generally presents a downward trend. However, the AQI value in a small number of regions, such as Xinjiang, shows a slow decline or even a reverse rise; (3) there are some of the main factors affecting AQI, such as GDP per capita, percentage of forest cover, total emissions of SO2, and these factors have different impacts on different regions. In addition, the increase of GDP per capita, the reduction of industrialization level, and the increase of forest coverage will significantly improve the air quality of other surrounding provinces. An in-depth analysis of the spatio-temporal evolution, influencing factors, and spillover effects of AQI in China is conducive to formulating countermeasures to improve air quality according to local conditions and promoting regional sustainable development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution)
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11 pages, 769 KiB  
Article
Short-Term Associations between PM10 and Respiratory Health Effects in Visby, Sweden
by Andreas Tornevi, Henrik Olstrup and Bertil Forsberg
Toxics 2022, 10(6), 333; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10060333 - 17 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1916
Abstract
The old Swedish city Visby, located on the island Gotland, has, for several years, reported higher PM10 concentrations than any other city in Sweden. In Visby, local limestone is used, both in road paving and as sand used for anti-slip measures, resulting [...] Read more.
The old Swedish city Visby, located on the island Gotland, has, for several years, reported higher PM10 concentrations than any other city in Sweden. In Visby, local limestone is used, both in road paving and as sand used for anti-slip measures, resulting in a clear annual pattern of PM10 with the highest concentrations during winter/spring when studded tires are allowed. This study analyzes the short-term associations between PM10 and daily number of patients with acute respiratory problems (ICD–10 diagnoses: J00–J99) seeking care at the hospital or primary healthcare units in Visby during the period of 2013–2019. The daily mean of PM10 was on average 45 µg m−3 during winter/spring and 18 µg m−3 during summer/autumn. Four outcome categories were analyzed using quasi-Poisson regression models, stratifying for period and adjusting for calendar variables and weather. An increase in respiratory visits was associated with increasing concentrations in PM10 during the summer/autumn period, most prominent among children, where asthma visits increased by 5% (95% CI: 2–9%) per 10 µg m−3 increase in PM10. For the winter/spring period, no significant effects were observed, except for the diagnose group ‘upper airways’ in adults, where respiratory visits increased by 1% (95% CI: 0.1–1.9%) per 10 µg m−3 increase. According to the results, limestone in particles seem to be relatively harmless at the exposure concentrations observed in Visby, and this is in line with the results from a few experimental and occupational studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution)
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Review

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17 pages, 1023 KiB  
Review
Indoor Secondary Pollutants Cannot Be Ignored: Third-Hand Smoke
by Jia-Xun Wu, Andy T. Y. Lau and Yan-Ming Xu
Toxics 2022, 10(7), 363; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10070363 - 30 Jun 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 3160
Abstract
Smoking has been recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the fifth highest threat to humanity. Smoking, a leading disease promoter, is a major risk factor for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and chronic respiratory diseases. NCDs account [...] Read more.
Smoking has been recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the fifth highest threat to humanity. Smoking, a leading disease promoter, is a major risk factor for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and chronic respiratory diseases. NCDs account for 63% of all deaths worldwide. Passive smoking is also a health risk. Globally, more than a third of all people are regularly exposed to harmful smoke. Air pollution is a common global problem in which pollutants emitted into the atmosphere undergo a series of physical or chemical reactions to produce various oxidation products, which are often referred to as secondary pollutants. Secondary pollutants include ozone (O3), sulfur trioxide (SO3), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and respirable particulate matter (PM). It is worth mentioning that third-hand smoke (THS), formed by the reaction of nicotine with second-hand smoke (SHS) caused by indoor O3 or nitrous acid (HONO), is a major indoor secondary pollutant that cannot be ignored. As a form of indoor air pollution that is relatively difficult to avoid, THS exists in any corner of the environment where smokers live. In this paper, we summarize the important research progress on the main components, detection, and toxicity of THS and look forward to future research directions. Scientific understanding of THS and its hazards will facilitate smoking bans in indoor and public places and raise public concern for how to prevent and remove THS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis, Exposure and Health Risk of Atmospheric Pollution)
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