SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Journal: Environmental research

360

The practice of social distancing and wearing masks has been popular worldwide in combating the contraction of COVID-19. Undeniably, although such practices help control the COVID-19 pandemic to a greater extent, the complete control of virus-laden droplet and aerosol transmission by such practices is poorly understood. This review paper intends to outline the literature concerning the transmission of virus-laden droplets and aerosols in different environmental settings and demonstrates the behavior of droplets and aerosols resulted from a cough-jet of an infected person in various confined spaces. The case studies that have come out in different countries have, with prima facie evidence, manifested that the airborne transmission plays a profound role in contracting susceptible hosts. The infection propensities in confined spaces (airplane, passenger car, and healthcare center) by the transmission of droplets and aerosols under varying ventilation conditions were discussed. Interestingly, the nosocomial transmission by airborne SARS-CoV-2 virus-laden aerosols in healthcare facilities may be plausible. Hence, clearly defined, science-based administrative, clinical, and physical measures are of paramount importance to eradicate the COVID-19 pandemic from the world.

310

Repeated Wi-Fi studies show that Wi-Fi causes oxidative stress, sperm/testicular damage, neuropsychiatric effects including EEG changes, apoptosis, cellular DNA damage, endocrine changes, and calcium overload. Each of these effects are also caused by exposures to other microwave frequency EMFs, with each such effect being documented in from 10 to 16 reviews. Therefore, each of these seven EMF effects are established effects of Wi-Fi and of other microwave frequency EMFs. Each of these seven is also produced by downstream effects of the main action of such EMFs, voltage-gated calcium channel (VGCC) activation. While VGCC activation via EMF interaction with the VGCC voltage sensor seems to be the predominant mechanism of action of EMFs, other mechanisms appear to have minor roles. Minor roles include activation of other voltage-gated ion channels, calcium cyclotron resonance and the geomagnetic magnetoreception mechanism. Five properties of non-thermal EMF effects are discussed. These are that pulsed EMFs are, in most cases, more active than are non-pulsed EMFs; artificial EMFs are polarized and such polarized EMFs are much more active than non-polarized EMFs; dose-response curves are non-linear and non-monotone; EMF effects are often cumulative; and EMFs may impact young people more than adults. These general findings and data presented earlier on Wi-Fi effects were used to assess the Foster and Moulder (F&M) review of Wi-Fi. The F&M study claimed that there were seven important studies of Wi-Fi that each showed no effect. However, none of these were Wi-Fi studies, with each differing from genuine Wi-Fi in three distinct ways. F&M could, at most conclude that there was no statistically significant evidence of an effect. The tiny numbers studied in each of these seven F&M-linked studies show that each of them lack power to make any substantive conclusions. In conclusion, there are seven repeatedly found Wi-Fi effects which have also been shown to be caused by other similar EMF exposures. Each of the seven should be considered, therefore, as established effects of Wi-Fi.

Concepts: Neuron, Statistical significance, Ion channel, Electrophysiology, Voltage-gated ion channel, Ion channels, Voltage-dependent calcium channel, Microwave

267

The health benefits of greenspaces have demanded the attention of policymakers since the 1800s. Although much evidence suggests greenspace exposure is beneficial for health, there exists no systematic review and meta-analysis to synthesise and quantify the impact of greenspace on a wide range of health outcomes.

223

Previous diet intervention studies indicate that an organic diet can reduce urinary pesticide metabolite excretion; however, they have largely focused on organophosphate (OP) pesticides. Knowledge gaps exist regarding the impact of an organic diet on exposure to other pesticides, including pyrethroids and neonicotinoids, which are increasing in use in the United States and globally.

128

Personal care products are a source of exposure to endocrine disrupting and asthma-associated chemicals. Because use of hair products differs by race/ethnicity, these products may contribute to exposure and disease disparities.

99

Adulteration is a growing food safety concern worldwide. Previous studies have implicated turmeric as a source of lead (Pb) exposure due to the addition of lead chromate (PbCrO4), a yellow pigment used to enhance brightness. We aimed to assess the practice of adding yellow pigments to turmeric and producer- consumer- and regulatory-factors affecting this practice across the supply chain in Bangladesh. We identified and visited the nine major turmeric-producing districts of Bangladesh as well as two districts with minimal turmeric production. In each district, we conducted semi-structured interviews and informal observations with individuals involved in the production, consumption, and regulation of turmeric. We explored perceptions of and preferences for turmeric quality. We collected samples of yellow pigments and turmeric from the most-frequented wholesale and retail markets. We collected samples of turmeric, pigments, dust, and soil from turmeric polishing mills to assess evidence of adulteration. Interviews were analyzed through an inductive, thematic coding process, with attention focused on perceptions of and preferences for turmeric quality. Samples were analyzed for Pb and chromium (Cr) concentrations via inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry and x-ray fluorescence. In total, we interviewed 152 individuals from across the supply chain and collected 524 samples of turmeric, pigments, dust, and soil (Table S3, Table S4). Turmeric Pb and Cr concentrations were highest in Dhaka and Munshiganj districts, with maximum turmeric powder Pb concentrations of 1152 μg/g, compared to 690 μg/g in the 9 major turmeric-producing districts. We found evidence of PbCrO4-based yellow pigment adulteration in 7 of the 9 major turmeric-producing districts. Soil samples from polishing mills contained a maximum of 4257 μg/g Pb and yellow pigments contained 2-10% Pb by weight with an average Pb:Cr molar ratio of 1.3. Turmeric wholesalers reported that the practice of adding yellow pigments to dried turmeric root during polishing began more than 30 years ago and continues today, primarily driven by consumer preferences for colorful yellow curries. Farmers stated that merchants are able to sell otherwise poor-quality roots and increase their profits by asking polishers to adulterate with yellow pigments. Adulterating turmeric with lead chromate poses significant risks to human health and development. The results from this study indicate that PbCrO4 is being added to turmeric by polishers, who are unaware of its neurotoxic effects, in order to satisfy wholesalers who are driven by consumer demand for yellow roots. We recommend immediate intervention that engages turmeric producers and consumers to address this public health crisis and ensure a future with Pb-free turmeric.

51

Many common environmental chemicals are mammary gland carcinogens in animal studies, activate relevant hormonal pathways, or enhance mammary gland susceptibility to carcinogenesis. Breast cancer’s long latency and multifactorial etiology make evaluation of these chemicals in humans challenging.

Concepts: Cancer, Breast cancer, Organ, Mammal, Breast, Exocrine gland, Mammary gland, Mammary tumor

50

Nitrate ingestion from drinking water has been associated with an increased risk of adverse birth outcomes as well as elevated risk of colorectal cancer and several other cancers. Yet, to date, no studies have attempted to quantify the health and economic impacts due to nitrate in drinking water in the United States.

41

Although the health effects of long term exposure to air pollution are well established, it is difficult to effectively communicate the health risks of this (largely invisible) risk factor to the public and policy makers. The purpose of this study is to develop a method that expresses the health effects of air pollution in an equivalent number of daily passively smoked cigarettes.

Concepts: Risk, Economics, Decision theory, Pollution, Number, Derivative, Finance

32

Poor mental health in childhood has implications for health and wellbeing in later life. Natural space may benefit children’s social, emotional and behavioural development. We investigated whether neighbourhood natural space and private garden access were related to children’s developmental change over time. We asked whether relationships differed between boys and girls, or by household educational status.

Concepts: Psychology, Sociology, Child, Childhood, Adolescence, Developmental psychology, Child development, Universe