2008 Progress Report: Comparative Toxicity of Coarse Particles

EPA Grant Number: R833742
Title: Comparative Toxicity of Coarse Particles
Investigators: Gordon, Terry , Chen, Lung Chi , Ito, Kazuhiko , Lippmann, Morton
Institution: New York University
EPA Project Officer: Chung, Serena
Project Period: March 1, 2008 through February 28, 2012
Project Period Covered by this Report: March 1, 2008 through February 28,2009
Project Amount: $1,199,927
RFA: Sources, Composition, and Health Effects of Coarse Particulate Matter (2006) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air , Air Quality and Air Toxics , Particulate Matter

Objective:

Using an interdisciplinary approach, the proposed in vivo and in vitro research will test the hypothesis that the adverse acute effects of coarse PM differ according to the source of coarse particles and therefore their composition.  Although the current air quality standards and health effects research focus primarily on PM10 and PM2.5, there is a paucity of data from either epidemiology or animal toxicology studies regarding the relative toxicity of coarse PM (and its components) in comparison to fine and ultrafine PM.  A critical issue in studying the adverse effects of coarse PM and its components is its heterogeneity throughout the different geographical regions in the U.S. (U.S. EPA, 2005) and its variation within each region from urban to rural areas.  We propose to conduct in vitro (using pulmonary, cardiac, and vascular cells) and in vivo (aspiration delivery of coarse PM to mouse lungs) research that will compare the toxicity of coarse PM collected from urban and rural settings in several geographical locations throughout the U.S.

Progress Summary:

1.    We presented our grant objectives in a platform session at the first annual meeting of the Coarse Particle grantees in 2008.
2.   We presented a poster at the EPA Board of Scientific Counselor’s review at EPA (RTP) in 2009.
3.   We have completed sampling at 5 sites in the NYC metropolitan area.  High volume sampling for both coarse (PM10-2.5) and fine (PM2.5) PM was conducted simultaneously for 1 month at all 5 sites both in the winter and summer.  The NY sites included 2 urban samplers (Manhattan and the Bronx) and 3 rural samplers (Sterling Forest, Goshen, and Wallkill).  The sampling sites were chosen for their heterogeneity in pollution sources.  Manhattan is a unique urban site whereas the Bronx site is more typical of U.S. cities.  The rural sites included a 14,000 acre State Park (Sterling Forest), a small rural town (Goshen), and a farm community (Wallkill).  At the time of this report, the Winter samples have all been extracted whereas the Summer samples are currently being extracted. The collected masses are sufficient to conduct the proposed in vitro an in vivo studies.  As shown in the tables below, there were significant day-to-day and site-to-site differences in the collected amount of coarse and fine PM as well as organic (OC) and elemental (EC) carbon.  As expected, the EC was higher at the urban sites but did not vary season to season, whereas OC was much higher in the summer.
4.   We have also completed the sampling of metal-rich coarse and fine PM from a unique source in Montréal.  The samples were obtained in collaboration with Dr. Audrey Smargiassi, University of Montréal, during the international pyrotechnic display competition that takes place each summer (25th Anniversary) in Montréal.  PM in the plume of the fireworks display was sampled during the 45 minute competitions that took place each Saturday from late June until mid August.  The sampling substrates have not been post-weighed, but based upon wind direction, it appears that the fireworks plume was, unfortunately, directly sampled only once during the 7 weekly samples.  These samples will be extracted, tested, and compared, in the bioassays, to ambient PM and metal-rich fireworks display PM collected from exposure chambers at the Sterling Forest lab.
5.   Because of the likely differences in composition in urban Beijing vs. U.S. cities and the changes in mass concentration and composition that occurred in Beijing and surrounding areas due to government-imposed restrictions on certain sources during the Olympics, a high volume PM sampler was set up in China.  In collaboration with Dr. Zhang (EOHSI, Rutgers) and Drs. Bai and Wang (Nanking University), sampling for coarse, fine, and ultrafine PM was completed in Beijing and nearby Tianjin during and after the 2008 Olympics.  The samples have been extracted and are currently being tested in the proposed in vitro bioassays.
6.   We also initiated a small change in the sampling protocol to begin collection of coarse particles larger than 10 µm.  Although standard setting in the U.S. has focused upon particles less than 10 µm, particles between 10 and 100 µm are inhalable and can enter the nasopharyngeal portion of the respiratory tract.  We have collected these larger particles on PUF substrates over a 1 week period at a rural and at an urban site and will compare their toxic properties and chemical composition.

 
 
NYC Metropolitan Samples – Coarse (PM10-2.5) and Fine PM (PM2.5)
 
Site
Season
PM10-2.5
mg*
mean
(range)
Extraction Efficiency
mean
PM2.5
mg*
mean
(range)
Extraction Efficiency
mean
Wallkill
Winter
13.7
(5.2-26.8)
72
26.3
(8.7 - 57.1)
71
Goshen
Winter
19.2
(7.2-33.1)
73
30.8
(8.3 - 59.8)
74
Sterling Forest
Winter
13.4
(3.7-29.5)
71
24.5
(3.8 - 68.8)
72
Bronx
Winter
25.0
(5.8-50.3)
77
38.9
(10.5 - 70.4)
67
Manhattan
Winter
33.5
(17.6-66.3)
70
39.7
(21.2 - 72.2)
64
Wallkill
Summer
15.4
(10.3-19.7)
ND
16.1
(9.3-24.7)
ND
Goshen
Summer
17.3
(10.9-23.9)
ND
19.5
(7.5-29.4)
ND
Sterling Forest
Summer
14.8
(9.5-21.3)
ND
17.2
(7.1-30.6)
ND
Bronx
Summer
21.1
(15.1-28.7)
ND
26.6
(15.1-45.9)
ND
Manhattan
Summer
23.2
(18.3-31.6)
ND
27.6
(18.0-40.7)
ND
 
* mg of coarse or fine PM collected on substrate
ND = not determined yet
 
 
NYC Metropolitan Samples – Organic (OC) and Elemental (EC) Carbon
 
Site
Season
OC
µg/m3
mean
(range)
EC
µg/m3
mean
(range)
OC/EC Ratio
Wallkill
Winter
0.16
(0-0.5)
0.06
(0.01-0.26)
2.7
Goshen
Winter
0.37
(0.04-0.81)
0.05
(0.01-0.16)
7.4
Sterling Forest
Winter
0.48
(0.24-0.91)
0.06
(0-0.17)
8.0
Bronx
Winter
0.64
(0.01-1.72)
0.17
(0.03-0.54)
3.8
Manhattan
Winter
0.67
(0.27-1.25)
0.19
(0.07-0.34)
3.5
Wallkill
Summer
1.41
(0.74-2.09)
0.1
(0.02-0.24)
14.1
Goshen
Summer
1.68
(0.93-2.37)
0.14
(0-0.55)
12.0
Sterling Forest
Summer
1.25
(0.67-1.76)
0.27
(0.05-0.51)
5.6
Bronx
Summer
1.16
(0.45-2.32)
.16
(0.02-0.58)
7.3
Manhattan
Summer
ND
ND
ND
ND = not determined yet
 
 
Significance of Findings: Because Year 1 was devoted primarily to sampling and setting up bioassay protocols, no important findings have been observed.  As expected, we have determined that PM and OC concentrations differ significantly from rural to urban sampling sites and day-to-day.
 
Publications/Presentations: No publications have resulted yet from this research.  The research plan was presented in a platform session at the Year 1 Coarse Particle grantee meeting and in a poster session at the EPA Board of Scientific Counselors review meeting.  The sampling and bioassay data will be presented at the annual SOT meeting in March, 2010.

Future Activities:

In the second year, we will sample urban and rural coarse particles in sites other than the NYC metropolitan area.  The choice of the sites will depend upon the results of our Health Effects Institute-funded research in which coarse, fine, and ultrafine PM is being sampled in 5 urban sites in the U.S.  The in vitro results are almost complete and we will use this data to choose the next sets of urban and rural coarse PM sampling sites.

We will also complete extraction of the Summer NYC regional samples and perform the in vitro bioassays in the second year.  We will also begin the in vivo bioassay in Year 2 but completion of the assays will continue into Year 3.

References:

Journal Articles:

No journal articles submitted with this report: View all 12 publications for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

ambient particulate matter, coarse, thoracic, source apportionment, in vitro, mouse, RFA, Scientific Discipline, Air, particulate matter, Health Risk Assessment, Biology, atmospheric particulate matter, sensitive populations, atmospheric particles, cardiopulmonary responses, human health effects, bioavailability, cardiovascular vulnerability, sensitive subgroups, cardiotoxicity, exposure assessment

Relevant Websites:

 

Progress and Final Reports:

Original Abstract
  • 2009 Progress Report
  • 2010 Progress Report
  • Final Report