Pollution Affects Brain Function

Armen Hareyan's picture

Pollution from diesel engines affects brain function.

It is already well known that nanoparticles from exhaust fumes is reaching brain and causing numerous health complications, such as headaches. A team of scientists from Zuyd University in the Netherlands now show that it also affects the way brain functions.


Researchers examined 10 volunteers who spent an hour in two different rooms - one with pure air and one with diesel engine like pollution. An electroencephalograph (EEG) was monitoring brain signals of volunteers.

After half an hour EEG registered significant stress in brains of those in polluted room. Brains were even more stressed by the end of hour. Meanwhile, EEG didn't register any changes in brains of those in clean aired room.

The study shows how much brains suffer among those working in garages, close to road places, highly polluted areas. Every person living in a big city is at high risk for pollution causing headaches, brain damage and other health conditions.

Paul Borm from Zuyd University said: "It is conceivable that the long-term effects of exposure to traffic nanoparticles may interfere with normal brain function and information processing."