Airborne particulate matter (PM) contains several quinones, which are able to generate reactive oxygen species impacting on cell viability. A method able to detect and quantify PM oxidative potential, based on the cytochrome c (cyt-c) reduction by means of superoxide anion produced through quinones redox cycling in the presence of reducing agents, is here described. Tris(2-carboxyethyl)phosphine resulted to be the most efficient reducing agent among the ones tested. The procedure included rapid particles extraction, followed by two alternative analytical methods, a spectrophotometric assay based on the initial rate of cyt-c reduction at 550 nm, and an amperometric assay, based on self-assembled monolayers modified gold electrodes. The smallest amount of PM needed to obtain an evaluable signal is 2 μg. The described procedure may represent a starting point to develop devices for PM measurements in polluted atmospheric environments.
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This research has been supported by a grant of Lombardy Region to M.C. for the project Smeller. We thank Dr. Costanza Ronchi for technical assistance in performing screen-printed electrode modifications.
Conflict of interest
The authors have no conflict of interest.
This research has been supported by a grant of Lombardy Region to M.C. for the project Smeller.
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No human subjects or animals have been used for this research.
Responsible editor: Gerhard Lammel
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Ciriello, F., Gualtieri, M., Longhin, E. et al. A new method and tool for detection and quantification of PM oxidative potential. Environ Sci Pollut Res 22, 12469–12478 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-015-4551-2
- Particulate matter
- Redox cycling
- Cytochrome c
- Gold electrode