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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(2), 316; doi:10.3390/ijerph15020316

PM Origin or Exposure Duration? Health Hazards from PM-Bound Mercury and PM-Bound PAHs among Students and Lecturers

Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, 166 Nowoursynowska St., 02-776 Warsaw, Poland
Institute of Environmental Engineering, Polish Academy of Sciences, 34 M. Skłodowska-Curie St., 41-819 Zabrze, Poland
Faculty of Fire Safety Engineering, The Main School of Fire Service, 52/54 Słowackiego St., 01-629 Warsaw, Poland
Department of Immunology, Transplant Medicine and Internal Diseases, Medical University of Warsaw, Nowogrodzka 59, 02-006 Warsaw, Poland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 December 2017 / Revised: 27 January 2018 / Accepted: 7 February 2018 / Published: 12 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Collection Environmental Risk Assessment)
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This study assessed inhalation exposure to particulate matter (PM1)-bound mercury (Hgp) and PM1-bound polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) among university students. For this purpose, simultaneous indoor (I) and outdoor (O) measurements were taken from two Polish technical universities (in Gliwice and Warsaw) located in distinct areas with respect to ambient concentrations and major sources of PM. The indoor geometric mean concentrations of Hgp were found to be 1.46 pg·m−3 and 6.38 pg·m−3 in Warsaw and Gliwice, while the corresponding outdoor concentrations were slightly lower at 1.38 pg·m−3 and 3.03 pg·m−3, respectively. A distinct pattern was found with respect to PAH concentrations with estimated I/O values of 22.2 ng·m−3/22.5 ng·m−3 in Gliwice and 10.9 ng·m−3/11.12 ng·m−3 in Warsaw. Hazard quotients (HQs) as a result of exposure to Hgp for students aged 21 ranged from 3.47 × 10−5 (Warsaw) to 1.3 × 10−4 (Gliwice) in terms of reasonable maximum exposure (RME). The non-cancer human health risk value related to Hgp exposure was thus found to be below the acceptable risk level value of 1.0 given by the US EPA. Daily exposure values for lecture hall occupants, adjusted to the benzo(a)pyrene (BaP) toxicity equivalent (BaPeq), were 2.9 and 1.02 ng·m−3 for the Gliwice and Warsaw students, respectively. The incremental lifetime cancer risk (ILCR) values with respect to exposure to PM1-bound PAHs during the students’ time of study were 5.49 × 10−8 (Warsaw) and 1.43 × 10−7 (Gliwice). Thus, students’ exposure to indoor PAHs does not lead to increased risk of lung cancer. View Full-Text
Keywords: indoor air quality; mercury; PAHs; health risk assessment; universities; lecture rooms; Poland indoor air quality; mercury; PAHs; health risk assessment; universities; lecture rooms; Poland

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Majewski, G.; Widziewicz, K.; Rogula-Kozłowska, W.; Rogula-Kopiec, P.; Kociszewska, K.; Rozbicki, T.; Majder-Łopatka, M.; Niemczyk, M. PM Origin or Exposure Duration? Health Hazards from PM-Bound Mercury and PM-Bound PAHs among Students and Lecturers. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 316.

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