Effects of air pollution on the human heart
Increased air pollution causes health and disease problems. The effect seems to be very bad in our cities. Researchers have now discovered that the hearts of young city residents contain billions of toxic air pollutants.
The latest Lancaster University study found that the hearts of young people in cities contain billions of dangerous air pollutants. The results of this study were published in the English journal "Environmental Research".
Relationship between polluted air and heart disease
Even the youngest participant in this study, at the age of three, was able to detect damage to heart cells due to the presence of small particles of air pollution. The researchers believe that these particles emitted by vehicles and industry can be responsible for the long statistical relationship between polluted air and heart disease. The authors report that exposure to nanoparticles can cause serious public health problems and immediately reduce air pollution.
All ages are affected
In early 2016, researchers found that the same nanoparticles were present in the human brain and could be linked to damage such as Alzheimer's. Even with this disease, the statistical relationship with air pollution is known. All age groups are affected by the negative effects of air pollution, but specifically the effects on children are worrying, the authors explain. Evidence of initial damage to the heart and brain has been found in young people.
Air pollution can cause diabetes and miscarriage
A comprehensive report recently concluded that air pollution can harm any organ and almost all cells in the human body, when small particles are inhaled, released into the bloodstream and transported through the body. The triggered damage can range from diabetes, to limited intelligence, to increased miscarriages. New research is the first direct evidence that iron-rich nanoparticles can cause heart disease. Laboratory tests have shown that small particles severely damage human cells. When many iron-rich nanoparticles penetrate directly into the subcellular constituents of myocardial tissue, the particles there damage what is called mitochondria – the cell's energy generator.
Air pollution must be reduced
Further efforts are needed to reduce particulate emissions from vehicles, especially to reduce the number of vehicles on the road. For example, people should be encouraged to travel short distances on foot or by bicycle.
Cardiac tissue from 63 young people was examined
This study analyzed the heart tissue of 63 young people who died in traffic accidents but did not experience breast trauma. These people have an average age of 25 and are from Mexico City, where high levels of air pollution are known to exist. This study calculates the amount of iron-rich nanoparticles that exist and analyzes their position in the tissue and related damage. The number of particles found was between 2bn and 22bn per gram of dry tissue and its presence was two to ten times higher among the population of Mexico City than among the nine controls who lived in less polluted places.
Particles may contain other toxic compounds
The researchers report that nanoparticle exposure appears to be directly related to early and significant heart damage. The results are relevant for all countries because there is absolutely no reason to believe that the impact will be different in other high-polluting cities, the authors added. The technique used to localize nanoparticles in heart tissue cannot be used to measure their exact composition. Instead, the researchers separated particles from the tissue to determine their magnetic composition and content, then used the average size and magnetic power of the particles to estimate the total amount. Based on previous research, it is expected that these particles may contain additional toxic contaminants. (US)
- Lilian Calderón-Garcidueñas, Angélica González-Maciel, Partha S.Mukherjee, Rafael Reynoso-Robles, Beatriz Pérez-Guilléc et al .: Burning and nanoparticles of magnetic friction air pollution originating from the human heart, in Environmental Research (questions: 13.07.2019) , Environmental Research