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Modulation of silica pathogenicity by surface processes.
Fubini B; Wallace WE
Adsorption on silica surfaces. Papirer E, ed. New York: Marcel Dekker, Inc., 2000 Apr; :645-664
Lung disease associated with occupational mineral dust exposure has been recognized in the written record for over two millennia, at least since the time of Hippocrates. Crystalline silica is probably the first material to have been recognized as particulate toxicant, being responsible for the development of long-term disease in people exposed to respirable-sized silica dusts. However, its mechanism of action at the molecular level is still obscure. This is due in great part to the extreme variability in surface properties among quartz dusts arising from different sources. so that any classification of crystalline silica dust as single substance is somehow cumbersome. This is reflected in the conclusions of most present literature in the field, such as the IARC monograph on silica carcinogenicity (IARC, 1997) and a few publications which have followed (Donaldson and Horm. 1998; Fubini, 1998b) describing crystalline silica dusts as a variable entity. Much of this variability resides in surface processes taking place when the dust is generated, stored, airborne. and inhaled. In this respect, adsorption processes on silica dusts are of paramount importance to understanding the pathogenic mechanisms.
Silica dusts; Silicates; Pathogenicity; Pathogenesis; Pathogens; Lung disease; Pulmonary system disorders; Respiratory system disorders; Mineral dusts; Occupational exposure; Particulate dust; Particulates; Quartz dust; Airborne dusts; Airborne particles
Adsorption on silica surfaces
Page last reviewed: April 9, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division