Toxic air pollution particles found in human brains
Detection of ‘abundant’ magnetite particles raises concerns because of suggested links to Alzheimer’s disease
Monday 5 September 2016 20.00 BST
Toxic nanoparticles from air pollution have been discovered in human brains in “abundant” quantities, a newly published study reveals.
The detection of the particles, in brain tissue from 37 people, raises concerns because recent research has suggested links between these magnetite particles and Alzheimer’s disease, while air pollution has been shown to significantly increase the risk of the disease.
However the new work remains a long way from proving the air pollution particles cause or exacerbate Alzheimer’s.
“This is a discovery finding and now what should start is a whole new examination of this as a potentially very important environmental risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease,” said Prof Barbara Maher, at Lancaster University, who led the new research.