Toxicity of combustion-generated iron-soot aerosol Conference Paper uri icon


  • A model aerosol with simpler chemical composition was tested to study the mechanisms of toxicity of combustion-generated aerosol. Iron-soot aerosol, which is the most abundant transition metal and hydrocarbon component in atmospheric particle, was generated from a laminar diffusion flame, burning ethylene and seeded with iron pentacarbonyl. The aerosol that is generated includes iron nano-crystals that are dispersed within a soot matrix. Previous animal exposure studies have shown that iron-soot aerosol can lead to oxidative stress, while iron alone and soot alone did not elicit a similar response. The biological effects of the aerosol arise from the reduction of a layer of iron at the surface of the particles, from Fe(III) to Fe(II). The presence of soot with iron can reduce iron from its oxidation state three to oxidation state two. Fe(II) is biologically more active that Fe(III), and can participate in the Fenton reaction with hydrogen peroxide to generate the highly reactive hydroxyl radical within lung fluid and cells. This is an abstract of a paper presented at the 30th International Symposium on Combustion (Chicago, IL 7/25-30/2004).

author list (cited authors)

  • Jung, H., Guo, B., Anastasio, C., & Kennedy, I.

publication date

  • January 2004