In vitro cytotoxicity and morphological assessment of smoke from polymer combustion in human lung derived cells (A549)

Fatma Lestari, A. J. Hayes, A. R. Green, G. Chattopadhyay

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8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The application of polymer and composites in building and modern transport interiors raises concerns of potential health hazards during combustion. Cytotoxicity and morphological assessment of smoke from polymer combustion in human lung derived cells (A549) has been investigated. A laboratory scale vertical tube furnace was used for the generation of combustion products. A range of materials used in the building and transport industry including high density-polyethylene (HDPE), polypropylene (PP), polycarbonate (PC), and polyvinyl chloride (PVC), fiberglass reinforced polymers (FRPs), and melamine faced plywood (MFP) were studied. The exposure of combustion toxicants to human lung cells (A549) at the air/liquid interface was acquired using a Harvard Navicyte Chamber. Cytotoxic effects on human cells were assessed based on cell viability using a selected in vitro cytotoxicity assays, including NRU (neutral red uptake) and ATP (adenosine triphosphate). Morphological assessment on the effects of combustion products in human lung cells from selected materials including PVC, FRP and MFP was assessed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The volatile organic compounds from thermal decomposition products were identified using ATD-GCMS (Automatic Thermal Desorption Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry). NOAEC (No Observable Adverse Effect Concentration), IC 10 (10% inhibitory concentration), IC 50 (50% inhibitory concentration), and TLC (Total Lethal Concentration) values (mg/l) were generated. The following toxicity ranking was observed from the most toxic material to the least toxic using the NRU assay: PVC>PP>HDPE>PC >FRP-10>MFP>FRP-16; and the ATP assay: PVC>HDPE>PP>FRP-10>FRP-16>MFP>PC. The method described here could potentially be an alternative to current fire toxicity standards.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)320-332
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health
Volume215
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2012

Keywords

  • A549
  • ATD-GCMS
  • ATP assay
  • Cytotoxicity of thermal decomposition products
  • MTS assay
  • NRU assay
  • Scanning electron microscopy

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