TUBE Stakeholder workshop, October 10, 2023, Brussels

Ultrafine particles and health information for regulators and policy developers

Stakeholder workshop 10 October 2023 Brussels

The health impact of extremely fine particles (so called ultrafines) and chemicals absorbed on these particles is still not well understood. Such ultrafine particles, being a fraction of PM2.5, have been proven to pass the alveoli, placental and brain barriers. They can reach other organs through the blood stream and generate serious health impacts, which need further research. The European Commission has funded research to develop more knowledge on air pollutant characteristics as well as consequent adverse effect mechanisms to support regulatory work and decision making of EC as well as national authorities. For example, is there a scientific basis to control and regulate ultrafine particles separately though independent of PM2.5 and are the current limits for vehicle engine exhaust enough to decrease the health burden of traffic emissions.

In this workshop, investigators of the TUBE (Transport derived Ultrafines and the Brain Effects) consortium and other related projects will present their key findings for stakeholders and how this could be input for policy. It is aimed to increase the understanding of the (health) impact of the different transport modes through monitoring, detection and modelling of emissions in the existing road vehicle fleet as well as ships and aircraft in different source environments. In addition, to show data for risk assessment from air pollutants from different transport modes and identification of cost-effective reduction measures. Moreover, we will provide technical evidence to assess gaps in current regulation of vehicles, fuels and air quality to promote better health.

Date and time: Tuesday 10 October 2023 at 9–16:30
Place: House of the Dutch Provinces, Brussels (street address: Trierstraat 59-61)

Stakeholder workshop is free of charge.


Coffee 9:00

9:15 Welcoming words by the TUBE project
Pasi Jalava, TUBE Coordinator, University of Eastern Finland

9:20 Welcoming words by the House of the Dutch Provinces
Alexander van den Bosch, House of the Dutch Provinces

9:30 Ultrafine particles from traffic as a cause of  neurodegeration, introduction to TUBE project
Pasi Jalava, University of Eastern Finland

9:50 New findings on emissions from modern vehicles and characterization of source environments 
Topi Rönkkö, Tampere University

10:10 Impact of the UFPs from road vehicles on respiratory system
Roel Schins, IUF – Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine

10:30  Findings on the UFP effects in brain and neurological cell cultures
Katja Kanninen, University of Eastern Finland

Coffee break 10:50—11:20

11:20 Effects of UFP exposure on brain functions and clearance
Louise Kelly, University of Southampton

11:40 Epidemiological and human exposure findings
Anna Oudin, Umeå University

12:00 Risks and policy recommendations and information needs
Flemming Cassee, Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment

Lunch break 12:30—13:30

13:30 Discussion on the findings and future needs for policy

14:00 An insight from the European Commission on emissions and health
Maurizio Maggiore, European Commission

14:30 The SCIPPER Project: Vessel emissions and monitoring
Leonidas Ntziachristos, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

Coffee break 15:00—15.20

15:20 General discussion

16:20 Wrap up and closing the workshop
Pasi Jalava, TUBE Coordinator

16:30 End of workshop


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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 814978.