Summary #1186

Toxic air pollution nanoparticles found in heart cell 'powerhouses' of city dwellers

eurekalert.org
  • Iron-rich nanoparticles, identical to those emitted from vehicles and industrial sources, found in the hearts of a 26-year-old as well as a 3-year-old toddler.
  • The hearts belonged to Mexico City citizens who died in accidents, and were studied with high-resolution electron microscopy and X-rays.
  • Within these hearts, the nanoparticles appear to have damaged the mitochondria (they make the heart pump), evidenced by deformities and ruptured membranes.
  • Big city dwellers may have up to ten times more nanoparticle pollution in their hearts than people living in less polluted places.
  • Research authors warn that governments around the world need to take action to reduce nanoparticle pollution in order to protect people from heart disease.

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