Publications by authors named "Ezio Bolzacchini"

13 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Leonardo da Vinci's "Last Supper": a case study to evaluate the influence of visitors on the Museum preservation systems.

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2021 Apr 4. Epub 2021 Apr 4.

Department of Chemistry and Biology, University of Salerno, via Giovanni Paolo II 132, 84084, Fisciano, Salerno, Italy.

The most important parameter to obtain an appropriate preservation condition of museum environments concerns the indoor air quality. The exposure of artwork and materials to gaseous and particulate pollutants introduced by visitors and either indoor or outdoor sources contributes to their decay. In this work, we evaluated the possible monitoring of the visitors' influence using the stable carbon isotopic ratio of CO and the concentration of NH as a real-time tool. The study was done in the Refectory of Santa Maria delle Grazie (Milan, Italy) which houses one of the most important paintings of Leonardo da Vinci, the Last Supper, and had more than 400,000 visitors in 2019. The results confirmed a good correlation between the presence of tourists inside the museum and the variation of δC value during the visits and the closure of the museum. The variation of indoor atmospheric δC was influenced by the presence of visitors in the Refectory and delineates the way done from the entrance to the exit. In the same way, the concentration of NH was influenced by the presence of visitors and confirmed the role of this one on preservation methodology for indoor air quality in the museum. This new methodology can be used as a supplemental and non-invasive tool to help in calibrating microclimatic conditions through the ventilation rate and air filtration systems in the museum and to manage the number of visitors per turn.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-021-13741-9DOI Listing
April 2021

What impact of air pollution in pediatric respiratory allergic diseases.

Pediatr Allergy Immunol 2020 11;31 Suppl 26:26-28

Department of Earth and Enviromental POLARIS, University of Milan Bicocca, Milan, Italy.

Respiratory allergies are known to affect people all over the world. Environmental factors related to pollution play a significant etiopathogenic role in this regard. Polluting sources are industrial activities and urban traffic, capable of generating various types of pollutants that trigger inflammatory, direct, and indirect damage to tissues, promoting allergic symptoms, even serious ones, and interfering with the pharmacologic response. They are also able to modify pollen, promoting allergic sensitization. Pollution could have played a significant predisposing role in the ongoing morbidity and mortality of SARS-CoV-2.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/pai.13362DOI Listing
November 2020

Heating Rate of Light Absorbing Aerosols: Time-Resolved Measurements, the Role of Clouds, and Source Identification.

Environ Sci Technol 2018 03 9;52(6):3546-3555. Epub 2018 Mar 9.

POLARIS Research Centre, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences , University of Milano-Bicocca , 20126 , Milano , Italy.

Light absorbing aerosols (LAA) absorb sunlight and heat the atmosphere. This work presents a novel methodology to experimentally quantify the heating rate (HR) induced by LAA into an atmospheric layer. Multiwavelength aerosol absorption measurements were coupled with spectral measurements of the direct, diffuse and surface reflected radiation to obtain highly time-resolved measurements of HR apportioned in the context of LAA species (black carbon, BC; brown carbon, BrC; dust), sources (fossil fuel, FF; biomass burning, BB), and as a function of cloudiness. One year of continuous and time-resolved measurements (5 min) of HR were performed in the Po Valley. We experimentally determined (1) the seasonal behavior of HR (winter 1.83 ± 0.02 K day; summer 1.04 ± 0.01 K day); (2) the daily cycle of HR (asymmetric, with higher values in the morning than in the afternoon); (3) the HR in different sky conditions (from 1.75 ± 0.03 K day in clear sky to 0.43 ± 0.01 K day in complete overcast); (4) the apportionment to different sources: HR (0.74 ± 0.01 K day) and HR (0.46 ± 0.01 K day); and (4) the HR of BrC (HR: 0.15 ± 0.01 K day, 12.5 ± 0.6% of the total) and that of BC (HR: 1.05 ± 0.02 K day; 87.5 ± 0.6% of the total).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.7b04320DOI Listing
March 2018

Chemically and size-resolved particulate matter dry deposition on stone and surrogate surfaces inside and outside the low emission zone of Milan: application of a newly developed "Deposition Box".

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2018 Apr 19;25(10):9402-9415. Epub 2018 Jan 19.

Department of Industrial Chemistry "Toso Montanari", University of Bologna, Viale del Risorgimento 4, 40136, Bologna, Italy.

The collection of atmospheric particles on not-filtering substrates via dry deposition, and the subsequent study of the particle-induced material decay, is trivial due to the high number of variables simultaneously acting on the investigated surface. This work reports seasonally resolved data of chemical composition and size distribution of particulate matter deposed on stone and surrogate surfaces obtained using a new method, especially developed at this purpose. A "Deposition Box" was designed allowing the particulate matter dry deposition to occur selectively removing, at the same time, variables that can mask the effect of airborne particles on material decay. A pitched roof avoided rainfall and wind variability; a standardised gentle air exchange rate ensured a continuous "sampling" of ambient air leaving unchanged the sampled particle size distribution and, at the same time, leaving quite calm condition inside the box, allowing the deposition to occur. Thus, the "Deposition Box" represents an affordable tool that can be used complementary to traditional exposure systems. With this system, several exposure campaigns, involving investigated stone materials (ISMs) (Carrara Marble, Botticino limestone, Noto calcarenite and Granite) and surrogate (Quartz, PTFE, and Aluminium) substrates, have been performed in two different sites placed in Milan (Italy) inside and outside the low emission zone. Deposition rates (30-90 μg cm month) showed significant differences between sites and seasons, becoming less evident considering long-period exposures due to a positive feedback on the deposition induced by the deposited particles. Similarly, different stone substrates influenced the deposition rates too. The collected deposits have been observed with optical and scanning electron microscopes and analysed by ion chromatography. Ion deposition rates were similar in the two sites during winter, whereas it was greater outside the low emission zone during summer and considering the long-period exposure. The dimensional distribution of the collected deposits showed a significant presence of fine particles in agreement with deposition rate of the ionic fraction. The obtained results allowed to point out the role of the fine particles fraction and the importance of making seasonal studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-018-1220-2DOI Listing
April 2018

Nitration of pollen aeroallergens by nitrate ion in conditions simulating the liquid water phase of atmospheric particles.

Sci Total Environ 2016 Dec 14;573:1589-1597. Epub 2016 Sep 14.

Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Milano-Bicocca, P.zza della Scienza 1, 20126 Milan, Italy. Electronic address:

Pollen aeroallergens are present in atmospheric particulate matter (PM) where they can be found in coarse biological particles such as pollen grains (aerodynamic diameter d>10μm), as well as fragments in the finest respirable particles (PM2.5; d<2.5μm). Nitration of tyrosine residues in pollen allergenic proteins can occur in polluted air, and inhalation and deposition of these nitrated proteins in the human respiratory tract may lead to adverse health effects by enhancing the allergic response in population. Previous studies investigated protein nitration by atmospheric gaseous pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide and ozone. In this work we report, for the first time, a study on protein nitration by nitrate ion in aqueous solution, at nitrate concentrations and pH conditions simulating those occurring in the atmospheric aerosol liquid water phase. Experiments have been carried out on the Bovine serum albumin (BSA) protein and the recombinant Phleum pratense allergen (Phl p 2) both in the dark and under UV-A irradiation (range 4-90Wm) to take into account thermal and/or photochemical nitration processes. For the latter protein, modifications in the allergic response after treatment with nitrate solutions have been evaluated by immunoblot analyses using sera from grass-allergic patients. Experimental results in bulk solutions showed that protein nitration in the dark occurs only in dilute nitrate solutions and under very acidic conditions (pH<3 for BSA; pH<2.2 for Phl p 2), while nitration is always observed (at pH0.5-5) under UV-A irradiation, both in dilute and concentrated nitrate solutions, being significantly enhanced at the lowest pH values. In some cases, protein nitration resulted in an increase of the allergic response.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.09.041DOI Listing
December 2016

Aerosol corrosion prevention and energy-saving strategies in the design of green data centers.

Environ Sci Technol 2013 Apr 28;47(8):3856-64. Epub 2013 Mar 28.

POLARIS Research Centre, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Milano-Bicocca, 20126, Milano, Italy.

The energy demands of data centers (DCs) worldwide are rapidly increasing, as are their environmental and economic costs. This paper presents a study conducted at Sannazzaro de' Burgondi (Po Valley), Italy, specifically aimed at optimizing the operating conditions of a DC designed for the Italian Oil and Gas Company (Eni) (5200 m(2) of Information Technology installed, 30 MW) and based on a direct free cooling (DFC) system. The aim of the study was to save the largest possible quantity of energy, while at the same time preventing aerosol corrosion. The aerosol properties (number size distribution, chemical composition, deliquescence relative humidity (DRH), acidity) and meteorological parameters were monitored and utilized to determine the potential levels of aerosol entering the DC (equivalent ISO class), together with its DRH. These data enabled us both to select the DC's filtering system (MERV13 filters) and to optimize the cooling cycle through calculation of the most reliable humidity cycle (60% of maximum allowed RH) applicable to the DFC. A potential energy saving of 81%, compared to a traditional air conditioning cooling system, was estimated: in one year, for 1 kW of installed information technology, the estimated energy saving is 7.4 MWh, resulting in 2.7 fewer tons of CO2 being emitted, and a financial saving of € 1100.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/es304790fDOI Listing
April 2013

Seasonal variations in chemical composition and in vitro biological effects of fine PM from Milan.

Chemosphere 2010 Mar 2;78(11):1368-77. Epub 2010 Feb 2.

POLARIS Research Center, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Milano-Bicocca, DISAT, Piazza della Scienza 1, Milan, Italy.

Fine particulate matter (PM1 and PM2.5) was collected in Milan over the summer (August-September) and winter (January-March) seasons of 2007/2008. Particles were analyzed for their chemical composition (inorganic ions, elements and PAHs) and the effects produced on the human lung carcinoma epithelial cell line A549. In vitro tests were performed to assess cell viability with MTT assay, cytokine release (IL-6 and IL-8) with ELISA, and DNA damage with COMET assay. Results were investigated by bivariate analysis and multivariate data analysis (Principal Component Analysis, PCA) to investigate the relationship between PM chemical composition and the biological effects produced by cell exposure to 12 microg cm(-2). The different seasonal chemical composition of PM showed to influence some biological properties. Summer PM samples had a high mass contribution of SO(4)(=) (13+/-2%) and were enriched in some elements, like Al, As, Cr, Cu, and Zn, compared to winter PM samples. Cell viability reduction was two times higher for summer PM samples in comparison with winter ones (27+/-5% and 14+/-5%, respectively), and the highest correlation coefficients between cell viability reduction and single chemical components were with As (R(2)=0.57) and SO(4)(=) (R(2)=0.47). PM1 affected cell viability reduction and induced IL-8 release, and these events were interrelated (R(2)=0.95), and apparently connected with the same chemical compounds. PM2.5 fraction, which was enriched in Ca(++) and Mg(++) (from soil dust), and Al, Fe, Zn, Ba Mn, produced cell viability reduction and DNA damage (R(2)=0.73).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2009.12.071DOI Listing
March 2010

Differences in cytotoxicity versus pro-inflammatory potency of different PM fractions in human epithelial lung cells.

Toxicol In Vitro 2010 Feb 20;24(1):29-39. Epub 2009 Sep 20.

Polaris Research Centre, Dipartimento Scienze Ambiente e Territorio, Università degli Studi di Milano Bicocca, Piazza della Scienza, Milano, Italy.

Air pollution in Milan causes health concern due to the high concentrations of particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5). The aim of this study was to investigate possible seasonal differences in PM10 and PM2.5 chemical composition and their biological effects on pro-inflammatory cytokine release and cytotoxicity. The PM was sampled during winter and summer seasons. The winter PMs had higher levels of PAHs than the summer samples which contained a greater amount of mineral dust elements. The PM toxicity was tested in the human pulmonary epithelial cell lines BEAS-2B and A549. The winter PMs were more cytotoxic than summer samples, whereas the summer PM10 exhibited a higher pro-inflammatory potential, as measured by ELISA. This inflammatory potential seemed partly due to biological components such as bacterial lipopolysaccharides (LPS), as evaluated by the use of Polymixin B. Interestingly, in the BEAS-2B cells the winter PM2.5 reduced proliferation due to a mitotic delay/arrest, while no such effects were observed in the A549 cells. These results underline that the in vitro responsiveness to PM may be cell line dependent and suggest that the PM different properties may trigger different endpoints such as inflammation, perturbation of cell cycle and cell death.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tiv.2009.09.013DOI Listing
February 2010

Winter fine particulate matter from Milan induces morphological and functional alterations in human pulmonary epithelial cells (A549).

Toxicol Lett 2009 Jul 20;188(1):52-62. Epub 2009 Mar 20.

POLARIS Research Center, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Milano Bicocca, Milan, Italy.

Samples of PM(2.5) were gravimetrically collected during the winter 2005/2006 in the urban area of Milan (North Italy). Samples were chemically characterized and the particles were detached from filters to determine their cytotoxic effects on the A549 cell line. Based on the potential toxicological relevance of its components, Milan winter PM(2.5) contained high concentrations of pro-oxidant transition metals and PAHs, while re-suspended particles showed a relatively high frequency of dimensional classes ranging from 40 nm to 300 nm. A549 cells exposed to particle suspensions showed a concentration-dependent decrease in viability, starting from 10 microg/cm(2). Phagocytosis of particles by A549 cells and particle aggregates were morphologically characterized and seemed to depend on both particle concentration and exposure time, with the majority of particles being engulfed in membrane-bound vacuoles after 24h of exposure. The ability of ultrafine particles to penetrate and spread throughout the cells was also verified. Cell membrane lysis and mitochondrial ultrastructural disruption appeared to be the main modifications induced by PM(2.5) on A549 cells. Concomitantly to the adverse effects observed in terms of cell mortality and ultrastructural lesions, a significant intracellular production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) was observed, suggesting that the cytotoxicity, exerted by the winter PM(2.5) in Milan, derived also from its oxidative potential, probably associated with particle-adsorbed metals and PAHs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.toxlet.2009.03.003DOI Listing
July 2009

A boxmodel development to study the relationships between the photo-oxidants and the particles formation in the troposphere.

Ann Chim 2003 Apr;93(4):447-56

University Bicocca of Milan, Department of Environmental Sciences, Piazza della Scienza 1, 20126 Milano, Italy.

The model BAGS (Boxmodel for Aerosol and Gasphase Simulations) has been developed. It is composed of two major modules: the first one describes the system of the chemical reactions in the gaseous phase, the second one calculates the aerosol chemical composition and the dimensional distribution of the particles. The boxmodel has been developed with the introduction of new chemical and physical processes, not previously included, in particular the formation of Secondary Organic Aerosol. The other implemented processes are a module for the dynamic of the particle population, nucleation, coagulation and dry deposition. The last phase of the work has been a check of the BAGS capabilities by a series of tests, that have permitted to compare it with other models (MAPS and MADM). The tests in particular have concerned the aerosol water content prediction, the photochemistry, the condensation of the inorganic compounds and the formation of Secondary Organic Aerosol.
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April 2003

Measurement of the carbonaceous component in the Milan urban particulate matter.

Ann Chim 2003 Apr;93(4):389-96

Dipartimento di Chimica Inorganica, Metallorganica e Analitica, Università degli Studi di Milano, via Venezian 21, 20133 Milano, Italy.

The carbonaceous component in the Milan urban particulate matter, i.e. the two components black carbon (BC) and organic carbon (OC), has been measured by means of a thermogravimetric analyzer combined with an infrared spectrophotometer (TGA/FT-IR). While black carbon may be considered a primary pollutant, organic carbon includes both primary emissions and secondary organic aerosols. Since carbonaceous aerosol (including a small quantity of inorganic carbon, too) makes up roughly from 25% to 50% of the average annual PM 2.5 mass concentration, a deeper understanding of this component is required. The TGA/FT-IR technique, employed for the first time to our knowledge for the quantification of the particulate matter carbonaceous component, allows, thought the results here presented are preliminary, to assess the two components BC and OC in a simple way especially if compared with the methods reported in the literature. The total carbon (TC) determinations performed by TGA/FT-IR on Milan urban particulate matter are in good agreement with the results obtained by a total organic carbon (TOC) analyzer operating directly on the solid sample.
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April 2003