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Health: Modern Diesel Engines More Harmful

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  • Health: Modern Diesel Engines More Harmful

    modern diesel engines are getting cleaner and cleaner - however, they are more dangerous for your health than old ones as a new study published in the "environmental science and technology" mag states:

    ASAP Environ. Sci. Technol., ASAP Article, 10.1021/es0716554
    Web Release Date: January 25, 2008

    Dang Sheng Su,*† Annalucia Serafino,‡ Jens-Oliver Müller,† Rolf E. Jentoft,† Robert Schlögl,*† and Silvana Fiorito‡

    Fritz Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society, Faradayweg 4-6, D-14195 Berlin, Germany and Institute of Neurobiology and Molecular Medicine, National Research Council (CNR), Via Fosso del Cavaliere 100, 00133 Rome, Italy

    Received for review July 5, 2007
    Revised manuscript received November 27, 2007
    Accepted December 3, 2007


    We evaluated, in vitro, the inflammatory and cytotoxic potential of soot particles from current low-emission (Euro IV) diesel engines toward human peripheral blood monocyte-derived macrophage cells. The result is surprising. At the same mass concentration, soot particles produced under low-emission conditions exhibit a much higher toxic and inflammatory potential than particles from an old diesel engine operating under black smoke conditions. This effect is assigned to the defective surface structure of Euro IV diesel soot, rendering it highly active. Our findings indicate that the reduction of soot emission in terms of mass does not automatically lead to a reduction of the toxic effects toward humans when the structure and functionality of the soot is changed, and thereby the biological accessibility and inflammatory potential of soot is increased.
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