International Journal of Biometeorology

, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 25–38 | Cite as

The effects of air ions on brain levels of serotonin in mice

  • A. P. Krueger
  • S. Kotaka


Mice were maintained in a controlled pollutant-free microenvironment and were exposed for 12, 24, 48 and 72 hr to 3 different concentrations of small positive or negative air ions: 2–4 × 103 ions/cm3, 3–4 × 104 ions/cm3 or 3.5–5 × 105 ions/cm3. Spectrophotofluorometric assays of brain serotonin levels of air ion-treated mice showed statistically significant differences as early as 12 hours from those of mice kept in untreated pollutant-free air. Essentially no deviation from control values were observed at 24 and 48 hours. After 72 hours of exposure sharp decreases took place in all groups with the single exception of the animals exposed to 3–4 × 104 positive ions/cm3. The hypothesis that alterations in mood and affect associated with certain meteorological conditions, e.g. winds such as the foehn, sirocco, etc. might depend upon air ion-induced changes in brain levels of serotonin was examined in the light of recent advances in neurophysiology and neuropharmacology.


Serotonin Serotonin Level Brain Level Single Exception Brain Serotonin 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Mäuse wurden in Kammern mit kontrolliertem verunreinigungsfreiem Kryptoklima 12, 24, 48 und 72 Stunden 3 verschiedenen Konzentrationen kleiner negativer und positiver Luftionen exponiert: 2–4 × 103; 3–4 × 104 und 3,5–5 × 105 Ionen/cm3. Die spektrofluorometrische Bestimmung des Serotonins im Gehirn der ionenbehandelten Mäuse zeigte bereits nach 12 Stunden statistisch signifikante Unterschiede beim Vergleich mit unbehandelten Kontrolltieren. Nach 24 und 48 Stunden Behandlung waren keine Unterschiede vorhanden. Nach 72 Stunden bestand in allen Gruppen, ausser in der mit 3–4 × 104 positiven Ionen behandelten Gruppe, ein starker Fall des Serotonins. Anhand dieser Ergebnisse und jüngster Erkenntnisse in der Neurophysiologie und Neuropharmakologie wird daraufhin die Hypothese geprüft, ob Veränderungen in der Stimmung und Erregung bei bestimmten meteorologischen Bedingungen, wie den Winden Föhn und Sirocco, von luftioneninduzierten Veränderungen des Serotoninspiegels im Gehirn abhängen.


On a placé des souris dans un microclimat contrôlé et exempt de pollutions. On les y a exposé durant 12, 24, 48 et 72 heures à 3 concentrations différentes de petits ions positifs ou négatifs, à savoir 2 à 4 × 103 ions/cm3, 3 à 4 × 104 ions/cm3 et 3, 5 à 5 × 105 ions/cm3. La teneur en sérotomine du cerveau, déterminée par procédé spectrophotofluorométrique a montré déjà après 12 heures des différences significatives chez les animaux traités par rapport à des témoins. Ces différences disparaissent avec un traitement de 24 ou 48 heures.Après 72 heures, on a constaté dans tous les groupes, sauf celui traité par de l'air contenant 3 à 4 × 104 ions positifs/cm3, une diminution importante de la sérotomine. Sur la base de ces résultats et de découvertes récentes en neuro-physiologie et en neuro-pharmacologie, on examine l'hypothèse si des modifications du degrés d'émotivité et d'irritabilité constatées par certaines situations météorologiques (foehn, sirocco par exemple) sont dues à des changements du taux d'ionisation de l'air qui entrafneraient une variation de la teneur en sérotomine du cerveau.


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Copyright information

© N.V. Swets & Zeitlinger 1969

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. P. Krueger
    • 1
  • S. Kotaka
  1. 1.Medical Microbiology Unit and The Naval Biological Laboratory, School of Public HealthUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

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