Author(s): Kasurinen S, Jalava PI, Happo MS, Sippula O, ,
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Abstract According to the World Health Organization particulate emissions from the combustion of solid fuels caused more than 110,000 premature deaths worldwide in 2010. Log wood combustion is the most prevalent form of residential biomass heating in developed countries, but it is unknown how the type of wood logs used in furnaces influences the chemical composition of the particulate emissions and their toxicological potential. We burned logs of birch, beech and spruce, which are used commonly as firewood in Central and Northern Europe in a modern masonry heater, and compared them to the particulate emissions from an automated pellet boiler fired with softwood pellets. We determined the chemical composition (elements, ions, and carbonaceous compounds) of the particulate emissions with a diameter of less than 1 µm and tested their cytotoxicity, genotoxicity, inflammatory potential, and ability to induce oxidative stress in a human lung epithelial cell line. The chemical composition of the samples differed significantly, especially with regard to the carbonaceous and metal contents. Also the toxic effects in our tested endpoints varied considerably between each of the three log wood combustion samples, as well as between the log wood combustion samples and the pellet combustion sample. The difference in the toxicological potential of the samples in the various endpoints indicates the involvement of different pathways of toxicity depending on the chemical composition. All three emission samples from the log wood combustions were considerably more toxic in all endpoints than the emissions from the pellet combustion. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
This article was published in Environ Toxicol
and referenced in Journal of Bioremediation & Biodegradation