Air pollution has become the world's single biggest environmental health risk of the past decade, causing millions of yearly deaths worldwide. One of the dominant air pollutants is fine particulate matter (PM2.5), which is a product of combustion. Exposure to PM2.5 has been associated with decreased lung function, impaired immunity, and exacerbations of lung disease. Accumulating evidence suggests that many of the adverse health effects of PM2.5 exposure are associated with lung inflammation and oxidative stress. While the physical structure and surface chemistry of PM2.5 are surrogate measures of particle oxidative potential, little is known about their contributions to negative health effects. In this study, we used functionalized carbon black particles as surrogates for atmospherically aged combustion-formed soot to assess the effects of PM2.5 surface chemistry in lung cells. We exposed the BEAS-2B lung epithelial cell line to different soot at a range of concentrations and assessed cell viability, inflammation, and oxidative stress. Our results indicate that exposure to soot with varying particle surface composition results in differential cell viability rates, the expression of pro-inflammatory and oxidative stress genes, and protein carbonylation. We conclude that particle surface chemistry, specifically oxygen content, in soot modulates lung cell inflammatory and oxidative stress responses.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)