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Forest fire smoke exposure

Marcel Hinz, Adrian Klein, Anke Schmitz, Helmut Schmitz
Infrared (IR) receptors are rare in insects and have only been found in the small group of so-called pyrophilous insects, which approach forest fires. In previous work the morphology of the IR receptors and the physiology of the inherent sensory cells have been investigated. It was shown that receptors are located on the thorax and the abdomen respectively and show an astounding diversity with respect to structure and the presumed transduction mechanism. What is completely missing, however, is any behavioral evidence for the function of the IR receptors in pyrophilous insects...
2018: PloS One
Matthew Noestheden, Eric G Dennis, Wesley Zandberg
Smoke-taint is a wine defect linked to organoleptic volatile phenols (VPs) in Vitis vinifera L. berries that have been exposed to smoke from wildland fires. Herein, the levels of smoke-taint-associated VPs are reported in Cabernet Franc berries from veraison to commercial maturity and in wine after primary fermentation following on-vine exposure to simulated wildland fire smoke. VPs increased after smoke exposure, were rapidly stored as acid-labile conjugates, and the levels of both free VPs and conjugated forms remained constant through ripening to commercial maturity...
December 15, 2017: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
Matthew D Ferguson, Erin O Semmens, Emily Weiler, Joe Domitrovich, Mary French, Christopher Migliaccio, Charles Palmer, Charles Dumke, Tony Ward
Across the world, biomass smoke is a major source of air pollution and is linked with a variety of adverse health effects. This is particularly true in the western U.S. where wood smoke from wildland forest fires are a significant source of PM2.5. Wildland firefighters are impacted as they experience elevated PM2.5 concentrations over extended periods of time, often occurring during physical exertion. Various epidemiological studies have investigated wood smoke impacts on human health, including occupational field exposures experienced by wildland firefighters...
September 2017: Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
Ana Abreu, Carla Costa, Susana Pinho E Silva, Simone Morais, Maria do Carmo Pereira, Adília Fernandes, Vanessa Moraes de Andrade, João Paulo Teixeira, Solange Costa
Portugal is among the European Union countries most devastated by forest fires each year. In the last three decades, more than 3.8 million hectares of forest were burned. Wildland firefighters are exposed to a variety of hazards, including many toxic combustion products that may lead to deleterious health effects. Epidemiological studies showed a positive association between firefighting and several chronic diseases, including cancer. Results from biomonitoring studies in firefighters, particularly concerning genotoxicity evaluation, constitute a valuable tool for investigating important occupational hazards...
2017: Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health. Part A
Clare Stawski, Julia Nowack, Gerhard Körtner, Fritz Geiser
Recent work has shown that the use of torpor for energy conservation increases after forest fires in heterothermic mammals, probably in response to the reduction of food. However, the specific environmental cues for this increased torpor expression remain unknown. It is possible that smoke and the novel substrate of charcoal and ash act as signals for an impending period of starvation requiring torpor. We therefore tested the hypothesis that the combined cues of smoke, a charcoal/ash substrate and food shortage will enhance torpor expression in a small forest-dwelling marsupial, the yellow-footed antechinus (Antechinus flavipes), because like other animals that live in fire-prone habitats they must effectively respond to fires to ensure survival...
January 15, 2017: Journal of Experimental Biology
Dewakar Sangaraju, Emily J Boldry, Yesha M Patel, Vernon Walker, Irina Stepanov, Daniel Stram, Dorothy Hatsukami, Natalia Tretyakova
1,3-Butadiene (BD) is an important industrial and environmental chemical classified as a known human carcinogen. Occupational exposure to BD in the polymer and monomer industries is associated with an increased incidence of lymphoma. BD is present in automobile exhaust, cigarette smoke, and forest fires, raising concern about potential exposure of the general population to this carcinogen. Following inhalation exposure, BD is bioactivated to 3,4-epoxy-1-butene (EB). If not detoxified, EB is capable of modifying guanine and adenine bases of DNA to form nucleobase adducts, which interfere with accurate DNA replication and cause cancer-initiating mutations...
February 20, 2017: Chemical Research in Toxicology
David A Morgott
This review examines available published information on ethylene emission sources, emission magnitudes, and inhalation exposures in order to assess those factors and circumstances that can affect human contact with this omnipresent gas. The results reveal that airborne ethylene concentrations at the ppb levels are commonplace and can arise in the vicinity of traffic corridors, forest fires, indoor kitchens, horticultural areas, oil fields, house fires, and petrochemical sites. The primary biogenic sources of ethylene derive from microbial activity in most soil and marine environments as well as its biological formation in wide variety of plant species...
November 5, 2015: Chemico-biological Interactions
Amy K Huff, Shobha Kondragunta, Hai Zhang, Raymond M Hoff
Increasing development of exo-urban environments and the spread of urbanization into forested areas is making humans and forest ecosystems more susceptible to the risks associated with wildfires. Larger and more damaging wildfires are having a negative impact on forest ecosystem services, and smoke from wildfires adversely affects the public health of people living in exo-urban environments. Satellite aerosol measurements are valuable tools that can track the evolution of wildfires and monitor the transport of smoke plumes...
2015: Environmental Health Insights
Kathleen E McLean, Jiayun Yao, Sarah B Henderson
The British Columbia Asthma Monitoring System (BCAMS) tracks forest fire smoke exposure and asthma-related health outcomes, identifying excursions beyond expected daily counts. Weekly reports during the wildfire season support public health and emergency management decision-making. We evaluated BCAMS by identifying excursions for asthma-related physician visits and dispensations of the reliever medication salbutamol sulfate and examining their corresponding smoke exposures. A disease outbreak detection algorithm identified excursions from 1 July to 31 August 2014...
June 2015: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Martine Dennekamp, Lahn D Straney, Bircan Erbas, Michael J Abramson, Melita Keywood, Karen Smith, Malcolm R Sim, Deborah C Glass, Anthony Del Monaco, Anjali Haikerwal, Andrew M Tonkin
BACKGROUND: Millions of people can potentially be exposed to smoke from forest fires, making this an important public health problem in many countries. OBJECTIVE: In this study we aimed to measure the association between out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) and forest fire smoke exposures in a large city during a severe forest fire season, and estimate the number of excess OHCAs due to the fire smoke. METHODS: We investigated the association between particulate matter (PM) and other air pollutants and OHCA using a case-crossover study of adults (≥ 35 years of age) in Melbourne, Australia...
October 2015: Environmental Health Perspectives
Annunziata Faustini, Ester R Alessandrini, Jorge Pey, Noemi Perez, Evangelia Samoli, Xavier Querol, Ennio Cadum, Cinzia Perrino, Bart Ostro, Andrea Ranzi, Jordi Sunyer, Massimo Stafoggia, Francesco Forastiere
BACKGROUND: An association between occurrence of wildfires and mortality in the exposed population has been observed in several studies with controversial results for cause-specific mortality. In the Mediterranean area, forest fires usually occur during spring-summer, they overlap with Saharan outbreaks, are associated with increased temperature and their health effects are probably due to an increase in particulate matter. AIM AND METHODS: We analysed the effects of wildfires and particulate matter (PM10) on mortality in 10 southern European cities in Spain, France, Italy and Greece (2003-2010), using satellite data for exposure assessment and Poisson regression models, simulating a case-crossover approach...
May 2015: Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Fay H Johnston, Stuart Purdie, Bin Jalaludin, Kara L Martin, Sarah B Henderson, Geoffrey G Morgan
BACKGROUND: Severe air pollution generated by forest fires is becoming an increasingly frequent public health management problem. We measured the association between forest fire smoke events and hospital emergency department (ED) attendances in Sydney from 1996-2007. METHODS: A smoke event occurred when forest fires caused the daily citywide average concentration of particulate matter (PM10 or PM2.5) to exceed the 99th percentile of the entire study period. We used a time-stratified case-crossover design and conditional logistic regression models adjusted for meteorology, influenza epidemics, and holidays to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for ED attendances on event days compared with non-event days for all non-trauma ED attendances and selected cardiorespiratory conditions...
2014: Environmental Health: a Global Access Science Source
Marcy L McNamara, Curtis W Noonan, Tony J Ward
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has designated a handful of instruments as Federal Reference or Federal Equivalency Methods (FRM and FEM, respectively) for the monitoring of fine particulate matter (PM2.5). More commonly used for indoor exposure assessment studies are optical scanning devices such as the DustTrak (TSI) due to the their portability and affordability. It is recommended by the manufacturer of these instruments that a "correction factor" be applied when assessing source-specific conditions...
June 1, 2011: Aerosol and Air Quality Research
Jiayun Yao, Jeff Eyamie, Sarah B Henderson
Exposure to forest fire smoke (FFS) is associated with multiple adverse health effects, mostly respiratory. Findings for cardiovascular effects have been inconsistent, possibly related to the limitations of conventional methods to assess FFS exposure. In previous work, we developed an empirical model to estimate smoke-related fine particulate matter (PM2.5) for all populated areas in British Columbia (BC), Canada. Here, we evaluate the utility of our model by comparing epidemiologic associations between modeled and measured PM2...
May 2016: Journal of Exposure Science & Environmental Epidemiology
Don Schweizer, Ricardo Cisneros
Management of fire is an important and controversial policy issue. Active fire suppression has led to a backlog of fuels, limited the ecological benefits of fire, and reduced short-term smoke impacts likely delaying these emissions to future generations over a larger spatial extent. Smoke impacts can be expected to increase as fire size and intensity increase and the fuel backlog is consumed; whether through reintroduction of fire under desirable conditions or through stand replacing fire. Land Management Agencies would like to increase the use of naturally ignited fires to burn during favorable conditions as a way to reduce catastrophic fires...
November 1, 2014: Journal of Environmental Management
Yong Ho Kim, Haiyan Tong, Mary Daniels, Elizabeth Boykin, Q Todd Krantz, John McGee, Michael Hays, Kasey Kovalcik, Janice A Dye, M Ian Gilmour
BACKGROUND: Emissions from a large peat fire in North Carolina in 2008 were associated with increased hospital admissions for asthma and the rate of heart failure in the exposed population. Peat fires often produce larger amounts of smoke and last longer than forest fires, however few studies have reported on their toxicity. Moreover, reliable alternatives to traditional animal toxicity testing are needed to reduce the number of animals required for hazard identification and risk assessments...
2014: Particle and Fibre Toxicology
Dewakar Sangaraju, Peter W Villalta, Susith Wickramaratne, James Swenberg, Natalia Tretyakova
Human exposure to 1,3-butadiene (BD) present in automobile exhaust, cigarette smoke, and forest fires is of great concern because of its potent carcinogenicity. The adverse health effects of BD are mediated by its epoxide metabolites such as 3,4-epoxy-1-butene (EB), which covalently modify genomic DNA to form promutagenic nucleobase adducts. Because of their direct role in cancer, BD-DNA adducts can be used as mechanism-based biomarkers of BD exposure. In the present work, a mass spectrometry-based methodology was developed for accurate, sensitive, and precise quantification of EB-induced N-7-(1-hydroxy-3-buten-2-yl) guanine (EB-GII) DNA adducts in vivo...
July 2014: Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry
Jiayun Yao, Sarah B Henderson
Exposure to forest fire smoke (FFS) is associated with a range of adverse health effects. The British Columbia Asthma Medication Surveillance (BCAMS) product was developed to detect potential impacts from FFS in British Columbia (BC), Canada. However, it has been a challenge to estimate FFS exposure with sufficient spatial coverage for the provincial population. We constructed an empirical model to estimate FFS-related fine particulate matter (PM2.5) for all populated areas of BC using data from the most extreme FFS days in 2003 through 2012...
May 2014: Journal of Exposure Science & Environmental Epidemiology
Fernando P Carvalho, João M Oliveira, Margarida Malta
Naturally occurring radionuclides of uranium, thorium, radium, lead and polonium were determined in bushes and trees and in the smoke from summer forest fires. Activity concentrations of radionuclides in smoke particles were much enriched when compared to original vegetation. Polonium-210 ((210)Po) in smoke was measured in concentrations much higher than all other radionuclides, reaching 7,255 ± 285 Bq kg(-1), mostly associated with the smaller size smoke particles (<1.0 μm). Depending on smoke particle concentration, (210)Po in surface air near forest fires displayed volume concentrations up to 70 m Bq m(-3), while in smoke-free air (210)Po concentration was about 30 μ Bq m(-3)...
February 15, 2014: Science of the Total Environment
Eric D Amster, Shahar S Fertig, Uri Baharal, Shai Linn, Manfred S Green, Zvi Lencovsky, Rafael S Carel
BACKGROUND: From 2 to 5 December 2010, Israel experienced the most severe forest fire In its history, resulting in the deaths of rescue workers. Little research exists on the health risks to emergency responders during forest fires, and there is no published research to date on occupational health among firefighters in Israel. OBJECTIVES: To describe the exposures experienced by emer gency responders to smoke, fire retardants and stress; the utilization of protective equipment; and the frequency of corresponding symptoms during and following the Carmel Forest fire...
June 2013: Israel Medical Association Journal: IMAJ
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