Hazard and risk assessment of a nanoparticulate cerium oxide-based diesel fuel additive - a case study.

Oxonica plc, Yarnton, Kidlington, United Kingdom.
Inhalation Toxicology (Impact Factor: 1.89). 05/2008; 20(6):547-66. DOI: 10.1080/08958370801915309
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Envirox is a scientifically and commercially proven diesel fuel combustion catalyst based on nanoparticulate cerium oxide and has been demonstrated to reduce fuel consumption, greenhouse gas emissions (CO(2)), and particulate emissions when added to diesel at levels of 5 mg/L. Studies have confirmed the adverse effects of particulates on respiratory and cardiac health, and while the use of Envirox contributes to a reduction in the particulate content in the air, it is necessary to demonstrate that the addition of Envirox does not alter the intrinsic toxicity of particles emitted in the exhaust. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the safety in use of Envirox by addressing the classical risk paradigm. Hazard assessment has been addressed by examining a range of in vitro cell and cell-free endpoints to assess the toxicity of cerium oxide nanoparticles as well as particulates emitted from engines using Envirox. Exposure assessment has taken data from modeling studies and from airborne monitoring sites in London and Newcastle adjacent to routes where vehicles using Envirox passed. Data have demonstrated that for the exposure levels measured, the estimated internal dose for a referential human in a chronic exposure situation is much lower than the no-observed-effect level (NOEL) in the in vitro toxicity studies. Exposure to nano-size cerium oxide as a result of the addition of Envirox to diesel fuel at the current levels of exposure in ambient air is therefore unlikely to lead to pulmonary oxidative stress and inflammation, which are the precursors for respiratory and cardiac health problems.

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