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A lie told often enough becomes the truth.
-- Vladimir Ilyich Lenin - See more at:
A lie told often enough becomes the truth.
-- Vladimir Ilyich Lenin - See more at:
A lie told often enough becomes the truth.
-- Vladimir Ilyich Lenin - See more at:

Friday, 10 August 2012

Compact Fluoros (CFLs) may damage skin.

Not as Green as first thought?
A new study, published in Scientific American (link) suggests that certain types of the energy-saving lightbulbs can become damaged and then may hurt skin cells.
The curlicue compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) oft touted as an Earth-friendly alternative to standard incandescent bulbs may cause skin damage, according to a new study by researchers at Stony Brook University.

The bulbs are already known to pose hazards from using mercury, a toxic element, though in very small quantities, as lighting manufacturers are quick to point out.
Here is the sting in the tail of the study:
Now researchers have found that ultraviolet radiation seeping through CFLs may damage skin cells. Miriam Rafailovich, a professor of materials science and engineering at Stony Brook, led the research after reading an article in an Israeli newspaper that reported a spike in skin cancer on a communal farm when residents switched to fluorescent bulbs.

"In the past two years some disturbing reports have surfaced mostly in the European Union literature, which indicate that exposure to CFL bulbs might be responsible for exacerbating certain skin conditions, such as photodermatoses and skin cancer in humans," says the paper, published last month in the journal Photochemistry and Photobiology

Using CFL bulbs from different manufacturers purchased from retailers on Long Island, the team exposed cultured skin cells in a petri dish to the bulbs mounted in a desk lamp from different distances for varying periods. The team measured how much UV light was emitted and then assessed how the cells responded.
"All of them had some [UV emissions], but some were a lot worse than others," Rafailovich said of the bulbs.

The Effects of UV Emission from Compact Fluorescent Light Exposure on Human Dermal Fibroblasts and Keratinocytes In VitroTatsiana Mironava, Michael Hadjiargyrou, Marcia Simon and Miriam H. Rafailovich
Article first published online : 20 JUL 2012, DOI: 10.1111/j.1751-1097.2012.01192.x


Compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs can provide the same amount of lumens as incandescent light bulbs, using one quarter of the energy. Recently, CFL exposure was found to exacerbate existing skin conditions; however, the effects of CFL exposure on healthy skin tissue have not been thoroughly investigated. In this study, we studied the effects of exposure to CFL illumination on healthy human skin tissue cells (fibroblasts and keratinocytes). Cells exposed to CFLs exhibited a decrease in the proliferation rate, a significant increase in the production of reactive oxygen species, and a decrease in their ability to contract collagen. Measurements of UV emissions from these bulbs found significant levels of UVC and UVA (mercury [Hg] emission lines), which appeared to originate from cracks in the phosphor coatings, present in all bulbs studied. The response of the cells to the CFLs was consistent with damage from UV radiation, which was further enhanced when low dosages of TiO2 nanoparticles (NPs), normally used for UV absorption, were added prior to exposure. No effect on cells, with or without TiO2 NPs, was observed when they were exposed to incandescent light of the same intensity.

1 comment:

  1. There you go! Evil man-made CO2 is toxic therefore little bit of mercury around the house is not such a relative bad thing.

    "Once broken, a compact fluorescent light bulb continuously releases mercury vapor into the air for weeks to months, and the total amount can exceed safe human exposure levels in a poorly ventilated room"


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