The interaction of pollution, meteorology and bioaerosols: implications on human health

Mahmood, Marliyyah Abdullahi (2018). The interaction of pollution, meteorology and bioaerosols: implications on human health. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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The global incidence of allergic reaction has been rising for years, especially within westernised urban areas. There is evidence that the interaction between pollen grains, environmental pollution and meteorological change is increasing the allergenicity of the pollen grain and consequently, increasing the misery of hay fever sufferers. Laboratory experiments have shown that the interaction of pollen with atmospheric oxidants such as ozone and nitrogen dioxide (\(NO_2\)) can alter protein molecules that are present within the pollen grains via post-translational modification of the protein.

Within the laboratory, birch pollen was exposed to atmospherically relevant exposures of gas phase \(NO_2\) and ozone under a range of environmentally relevant conditions (temperature and relative humidity RH). The effects of the exposures on the biochemistry of the pollen grains were probed using proteomic approach. The morphological changes of unexposed and exposed pollen samples to RH, rainwater and \(NO_2\), where observed under fluorescence microscopy and scanning electron microscope. The discoveries suggest that interaction between gas pollutants and pollen do exist and cause protein specific modifications; nitration.

Detailed analysis of London Ambulance data compared to London temperature data is presented. The relationships established will allow for prediction of likely changes in ambulance demand (and illness types) that will be caused by seasonal temperature changes, increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, due to climate change, in the future.

The study applied statistical analyses to examine short-term associations between birch pollen count with allergic related illnesses recorded in the London Ambulance data, temperature and \(NO_2\).

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
School or Department: School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Funders: Other
Other Funders: Nigerian Nuclear Regulatory Authority, Petroleum Technology Development Fund, Nigeria
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Q Science > QR Microbiology > QR180 Immunology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine


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