Particulate Matter
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Se-Ra Park ◽  
Joong Won Lee ◽  
Seong-Kwan Kim ◽  
Wook-Joon Yu ◽  
Seung-Jin Lee ◽  

AbstractFine particulate matter (PM) has a small diameter but a large surface area; thus, it may have broad toxic effects that subsequently damage many tissues of the human body. Interestingly, many studies have suggested that the recent decline in female fertility could be associated with increased PM exposure. However, the precise mechanisms underlying the negative effects of PM exposure on female fertility are still a matter of debate. A previous study demonstrated that resident stem cell deficiency limits the cyclic regenerative capacity of the endometrium and subsequently increases the pregnancy failure rate. Therefore, we hypothesized that PM exposure induces endometrial tissue damage and subsequently reduces the pregnancy rate by inhibiting various beneficial functions of local endometrial stem cells. Consistent with our hypothesis, we showed for the first time that PM exposure significantly inhibits various beneficial functions of endometrial stem cells, such as their self-renewal, transdifferentiation, and migratory capacities, in vitro and in vivo through the PM target gene SERPINB2, which has recently been shown to be involved in multiple stem cell functions. In addition, the PM-induced inhibitory effects on the beneficial functions of endometrial stem cells were significantly diminished by SERPINB2 depletion. Our findings may facilitate the development of promising therapeutic strategies for improving reproductive outcomes in infertile women.

Livia Cabernard ◽  
Stephan Pfister ◽  
Christopher Oberschelp ◽  
Stefanie Hellweg

AbstractResearch on the environmental impacts from the global value chain of plastics has typically focused on the disposal phase, considered most harmful to the environment and human health. However, the production of plastics is also responsible for substantial environmental, health and socioeconomic impacts. We show that the carbon and particulate-matter-related health footprint of plastics has doubled since 1995, due mainly to growth in plastics production in coal-based economies. Coal-based emissions have quadrupled since 1995, causing almost half of the plastics-related carbon and particulate-matter-related health footprint in 2015. Plastics-related carbon footprints of China’s transportation, Indonesia’s electronics industry and India’s construction sector have increased more than 50-fold since 1995. In 2015, plastics caused 4.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Moreover, 6% of global coal electricity is used for plastics production. The European Union and the United States have increasingly consumed plastics produced in coal-based economies. In 2015, 85% of the workforce required for plastics consumed by the European Union and the United States was employed abroad, but 80% of the related value added was generated domestically. As high-income regions have outsourced the energy-intensive steps of plastics production to coal-based economies, renewable energy investments throughout the plastics value chain are critical for sustainable production and consumption of plastics.

2021 ◽  
Zhigang Sui ◽  
Xiaoyao Song ◽  
Yujie Wu ◽  
Rui Hou ◽  
Jianhui Liu ◽  

Abstract Exposure to airborne fine particulate matter (PM2.5) induced various adverse health effects, such as metabolic syndrome, systemic inflammation and respiratory infection. Many works have studied the influence of PM2.5 exposure to intracellular proteome and the underlying mechanism. But the extracellular proteome changes under PM2.5 exposure, and the correlation between secretome changes and PM2.5-induced cytotoxicity remains confusing. Herein, the cytotoxicity of PM2.5 on normal human bronchial epithelia cells (BEAS-2B) was evaluated and the secretome profile of BEAS-2B cells before and after PM2.5 exposure was investigated. The secretion of 83 proteins (58 up-regulated and 25 down-regulated) was differentially expressed upon PM2.5 treatment. In addition to apoptosis, extracellular matrix (ECM) organization, complement activation and RNA splicing were also found to be involved in PM2.5 mediated cytotoxicity. These results provide an insight into the underlying mechanism of respiratory injury caused by PM2.5.

2021 ◽  
Vol 9 ◽  
Zhenyu Liang ◽  
Qiong Meng ◽  
Qiaohuan Yang ◽  
Na Chen ◽  
Chuming You

The burden of lower respiratory infections is primarily evident in the developing countries. However, the association between size-specific particulate matter and acute lower respiratory infection (ALRI) outpatient visits in the developing countries has been less studied. We obtained data on ALRI outpatient visits (N = 105,639) from a tertiary hospital in Guangzhou, China between 2013 and 2019. Over-dispersed generalized additive Poisson models were employed to evaluate the excess risk (ER) associated with the size-specific particulate matter, such as inhalable particulate matter (PM10), coarse particulate matter (PMc), and fine particulate matter (PM2.5). Counterfactual analyses were used to examine the potential percent reduction of ALRI outpatient visits if the levels of air pollution recommended by the WHO were followed. There were 35,310 pneumonia, 68,218 bronchiolitis, and 2,111 asthma outpatient visits included. Each 10 μg/m3 increase of 3-day moving averages of particulate matter was associated with a significant ER (95% CI) of outpatient visits of pneumonia (PM2.5: 3.71% [2.91, 4.52%]; PMc: 9.19% [6.94, 11.49%]; PM10: 4.36% [3.21, 5.52%]), bronchiolitis (PM2.5: 3.21% [2.49, 3.93%]; PMc: 9.13% [7.09, 11.21%]; PM10: 3.12% [2.10, 4.15%]), and asthma (PM2.5: 3.45% [1.18, 5.78%]; PMc: 11.69% [4.45, 19.43%]; PM10: 3.33% [0.26, 6.49%]). The association between particulate matter and pneumonia outpatient visits was more evident in men patients and in the cold seasons. Counterfactual analyses showed that PM2.5 was associated with a larger potential decline of ALRI outpatient visits compared with PMc and PM10 (pneumonia: 11.07%, 95% CI: [7.99, 14.30%]; bronchiolitis: 6.30% [4.17, 8.53%]; asthma: 8.14% [2.65, 14.33%]) if the air pollutants were diminished to the level of the reference guidelines. In conclusion, short-term exposures to PM2.5, PMc, and PM10 are associated with ALRI outpatient visits, and PM2.5 is associated with the highest potential decline in outpatient visits if it could be reduced to the levels recommended by the WHO.

2021 ◽  
Ahmed I Rushdi ◽  
Bernd R. T. Simoneit ◽  
Luis Lijotra ◽  
Abdulqader Y. Bazeyad ◽  
Ramil Dumenden ◽  

Abstract This work describes the seasonal variations, levels, and possible health effects of groups of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) as phthalates (Ps), non-phthalates (NPs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and phenyl phosphates (PhePhs) in ambient total suspended particles (TSP) from the city of Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. The mass concentrations of TSP ranged from 88±32 µg m−3 in winter to 350±320 µg m−3 in summer. The total concentrations of these compounds varied from 337±266 ng m−3 in summer to 469±403 ng m−3 in winter. The major compounds were Ps (235±199 ng m−3 in summer to 389±335 ng m−3 in winter), PCBs (30.7±19.3 ng m−3 in autumn to 65.6±61.2 ng m−3 in summer), NPs (4.9±2.3 ng m−3 in summer to 11.9±12.5 ng m−3 in winter), and PhePhs (4.1±4.0 ng m−3 in spring to 13.3±3.2 ng m−3 in summer). The proportional fractions of these POPs relative to natural biogenic sources and petroleum-related emissions were extremely high ranging from 17% in winter to 47% in autumn. Significant correlations were found among these different POP groups and total concentrations, suggesting that they were from local sources. Principal component analysis indicated that Ps and NPs were from the same initial sources, and the PhePhs as well as PCBs were from different regional sources, where the latter were dependent on the TSP levels. In the long term, the elevated levels of these POPs in the TSP of these urban areas will affect human health by eventually developing a range of illnesses.

2021 ◽  
Vol 12 ◽  
Tengyu Zhu ◽  
Xue Chen ◽  
Huan Qiu ◽  
Yang Liu ◽  
James Mwangi ◽  

As an important source of air pollutant, airborne particulate matter (PM) has become a major threat to public health. Orchitis is characterized by acute or chronic testicular inflammation and is a primary cause of male infertility. Although accumulating evidence indicates that PM exposure is associated with increased male infertility rates, the mechanism by which PM is involved is not well understood. Here, we found that short-term PM exposure activated NF-κB signaling in mouse Leydig cells and testes and leading to asymptomatic orchitis. Analyzing the mitochondrial abundance and cGAMP levels in PM exposed mouse Leydig cells, we found that PM exposure induced mitochondrial injury and mtDNA release, leading to inflammation via the cGAS-STING axis. We also found that aspirin-induced acetylation of cGAS inhibited the inflammation in mice after PM exposure, especially in the testes. Moreover, aspirin pretreatment rescued offspring growth in PM-exposed mice. In summary, our study not only provides evidence that PM-induced asymptomatic orchitis in mice may be amenable to aspirin pre-treatment by acetylating cGAS, but also provides a potential explanation for male infertility caused by air pollutants.

2021 ◽  
Vol 11 (23) ◽  
pp. 11390
Giulia Papa ◽  
Giancarlo Capitani ◽  
Marco Pellecchia ◽  
Ilaria Negri

The global demand for bee pollen as a dietary supplement for human nutrition is increasing. Pollen, which comprises proteins and lipids from bees’ diets, is rich in essential amino acids, omega fatty acids, and bioactive compounds that can have beneficial effects on human health. However, bee pollen may also contain contaminants due to environmental contamination. To date, data on bee pollen contamination by environmental pollutants refer almost exclusively to pesticides and heavy metals, and very little information is available on the potential contamination of bee pollen by airborne particulate matter (PM), a ubiquitous pollutant that originates from a wide range of anthropogenic sources (e.g., motor vehicles, industrial processes, agricultural operations). In the present study, pollen grains collected by forager bees living in an industrial area of the Po Valley (Northern Italy) were analyzed for contamination by inorganic PM. The morpho-chemical characterization of inorganic particles using SEM/EDX allowed us to identify different emission sources and demonstrate the potential risk of PM entering the food chain and exposing bees to its ingestion.

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