Platinum Metals in Airborne Particulate Matter and Their Bioaccessibility

  • Clare L. S. WisemanEmail author
Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ESE)


Environmental concentrations of the platinum group elements (PGE) platinum (Pt), palladium (Pd) and rhodium (Rh) have been steadily increasing, due largely to their use as catalysts in automotive catalytic converters to reduce pollutant emissions. Due mainly to earlier studies which reported that PGE are most likely to be emitted in a benign metallic form, the general assumption has been that the potential health impacts of environmental exposures to these elements are limited. Recent studies on the bioaccessibility of these elements post-emission, however, both in the environment and upon uptake by organisms, indicate that concerns associated with low dose, environmental exposures are indeed warranted. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the most recent evidence pertaining to the bioaccessibility and toxic potential of environmental exposures of PGE, particularly that in airborne particulate matter (PM), the most relevant source of exposures in humans. This review is, in part, an adaptation of an article that was published in Science of the Total Environment (Wiseman and Zereini 2009).


Road Dust Platinum Group Element Catalytic Converter Traffic Site Simulated Lung Fluid 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of the Environment, Earth Sciences CentreUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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