如果不阻止不斷惡化的空氣污染物，所有吸入污染物的生物都會受到威脅。即使能夠生存下去，環境條件也變得非常嚴酷的。保護我們的生活環境變得至關重要，改善空氣質素不應再拖延下去。 聯合國兒童基金會發表的“為兒童潔淨空氣 – 空氣污染對兒童的影響”指出空氣污染的負面作用：
Without putting a stop to the worsening volume of air pollutants, the very survival of all life forms is threatened. Even if they can survive, condition will be most harsh. Protection of our living environment becomes critical and should not be delayed any further. From the “Clear the air for children – The impact of air pollution on children” by the UNICEF:
Young children’s immune systems are still developing, and their lungs are still growing. With every breath, children take in more air per unit of body weight than adults. By extension, when air is toxic, they take in more toxic air per unit of body weight than adults. Moreover, the impacts have ripple effects into other critical aspects of children’s lives. For example, when children get sick, they might miss school, further limiting their learning and development potential.
Air pollution potentially affects children’s brains through several mechanisms.
First, particulate matter can cause neuro-inflammation by damaging the blood-brain barrier – a thin, delicate membrane that protects the brain from toxic substances Ultrafine pollution particles (particulate matter that is equal or less than 2.5 microns in diameter) pose an especially high risk because they can more easily enter the blood stream and travel through the body to the brain.
In older people, the breakdown of the blood-brain barrier has been strongly linked with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. The dosage of toxic chemicals required to damage the growing brain in the first stages of life is much lower than that which would cause damage to an adult brain.
一些特別的空氣污染顆粒，如磁鐵礦， 其體積是非常細小的，它可以通過嗅覺神經和腸道進入人體。在城市室外環境中，磁鐵礦是一種非常普遍的污染物。最新研究發現，在空氣污染很高的城市地區，人體大的腦內亦存在相當高水平的磁鐵礦。由於細小如納米的磁鐵礦粒子帶有磁荷，及容易促進氧化反應能力，因此，磁鐵礦對大腦來說，具有非常高度毒性 – 這也是使神經退化等疾病的其中主要原因。
Second, specific air pollution particles, such as magnetite, are so small that they can enter the body through the olfactory nerve and the gut.
Magnetite is very common in urban outdoor air pollution, and a recent study found that it was considerably more present in brains of people living in areas where urban air pollution is high. Magnetite nanoparticles are highly toxic to the brain due to their magnetic charge and their ability to help create oxidative stress – which is often the cause of neurodegenerative diseases.
多項研究顯示，大腦的白質含有神經纖維，這些神經纖維在神經元交流時，用作幫助大腦跨越不同部位進行關鍵性交流。幼兒在成長階段， 利用 感官接觸外界，良好的神經聯繫為持續習和發展提供了關鍵性的基礎。 進一步的神經學研究顯示，暴露在空氣污染的環境，會直接影響兒童的認知功能力，包括了其語言和非語言的智商及記憶力、降低幼兒在學校的考試測驗分數、及使兒童較同輩之間平均分等級為低，此外，也還會引起兒童的其他行為問題。媽媽在懷孕期間吸入含污染物的空氣，汚染物可能會穿過胎盤並影響胎兒的腦部發育，這影響甚至是終生性的。研究顯示，媽媽產前暴露於高濃度空氣污染的環境，與幼兒3歲時發育遲緩是相關聯的，亦也引致兒童後期的心理和行為問題，包括注意力不足過動症（ADHD），焦慮症和抑鬱症等症狀，一項研究報告指出，暴露在含空氣污染的子宫，幼兒5歲時的商會會下降4點。
Third, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)
Several studies also show that polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), a specific class of pollutants formed from fossil fuel combustion and commonly found in areas of high automobile traffic, contribute to a loss of or damage to white matter in the brain. White matter contains nerve fibers that are critical in helping neurons communicate across different parts of the brain. As children grow and experience the world around them, well-functioning neural connections provide the foundation for continued learning and development. Air pollution and cognitive function Reinforcing the neurological evidence, studies have found associations directly between air pollution exposure and cognitive outcomes, including verbal and nonverbal IQ and memory, reduced test scores, grade-point averages among school children, as well as other neurological behavioral problems. Air pollutants inhaled during pregnancy can cross the placenta and affect the developing brain of a fetus, with potential lifelong effects. Research shows an association between prenatal exposure to high levels of air pollution and developmental delay at age three, as well as psychological and behavioral problems later in childhood, including symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), anxiety, and depression. One study reports a four-point drop in IQ by the age of 5 among a sample of children exposed in utero to toxic air pollution.
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Air pollutants, in particular, fine particles (commonly referred to as PM2.5) and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), are respirable suspended particulates pollutants, gases phase pollutants, and/or the mixtures of them in the air and can cause wide ranging adverse effects to human health. Scientific studies have linked exposure to air pollutants to health issues such as impairment to foetus development, child growth, overall wellness, and in severe cases, death. Not only are air pollutants harmful to brain development in children, it also leads to early brain degeneration and the early onset of dementia for the elderlies. Apart from the increased burden towards health care costs, adverse effect of air pollution also creates a direct impact on the economic and social development. The overall costs caused by air pollutants continue to rise.
*1 檢測於廣州工業微生物檢測中心進行，該檢測中心是中國計量認證CMA和中國合格評定國家認可委員會CNAS認證實驗室由國家合格評定認證認可委員會。（ 註：中國計量認證，是China Inspection Body and Laboratory Mandatory Approval 簡稱“CMA”)。是根據中華人民共和國計量法的規定，由省級以上人民政府計量行政部門對檢測機構的檢測能力及可靠性進行的一種全面的認證及評價。中國合格評定國家認可委員會（英文名稱為：China National Accreditation Service for Conformity Assessment 簡稱“CNAS”），是根據《中華人民共和國認證認可條例》的規定，由國家認證認可監督管理委員會批準設立並授權的國家認可機構。）
*1 Testing was performed in the Guangzhou Testing Center of Industiral Microbiology, South Chiina Testing Center of Air Purification Products, which are certified laboratory for CMA and CNAS (China Inspection Body and Laboratory Mandatory Approval & China National Accreditation Service for Conformity Assessment) *2 market available products: the common air purifier that available in the market, being reported by the Hong Kong Consumer Report in year 2016.
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