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      Temporal and Spatial Variability of Volatile Organic Compounds in the Forest Atmosphere

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          Abstract

          The healing effects of the forest are increasingly being valued for their contribution to human psychological and physiological health, motivating further advances aimed at improving knowledge of relevant forest resources. Biogenic volatile organic compounds, emitted by the plants and accumulating in the forest atmosphere, are essential contributors to the healing effects of the forest, and represent the focus of this study. Using a photoionization detector, we investigated the high frequency variability, in time and space, of the concentration of total volatile organic compounds on a hilly site as well as along forest paths and long hiking trails in the Italian northern Apennines. The scale of concentration variability was found to be comparable to absolute concentration levels within time scales of less than one hour and spatial scales of several hundred meters. During daylight hours, on clear and calm days, the concentration peaked from noon to early afternoon, followed by early morning, with the lowest levels in the late afternoon. These results were related to meteorological variables including the atmospheric vertical stability profile. Moreover, preliminary evidence pointed to higher concentrations of volatile organic compounds in forests dominated by conifer trees in comparison to pure beech forests.

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          The Model of Emissions of Gases and Aerosols from Nature version 2.1 (MEGAN2.1): an extended and updated framework for modeling biogenic emissions

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            A systematic review of evidence for the added benefits to health of exposure to natural environments

            Background There is increasing interest in the potential role of the natural environment in human health and well-being. However, the evidence-base for specific and direct health or well-being benefits of activity within natural compared to more synthetic environments has not been systematically assessed. Methods We conducted a systematic review to collate and synthesise the findings of studies that compare measurements of health or well-being in natural and synthetic environments. Effect sizes of the differences between environments were calculated and meta-analysis used to synthesise data from studies measuring similar outcomes. Results Twenty-five studies met the review inclusion criteria. Most of these studies were crossover or controlled trials that investigated the effects of short-term exposure to each environment during a walk or run. This included 'natural' environments, such as public parks and green university campuses, and synthetic environments, such as indoor and outdoor built environments. The most common outcome measures were scores of different self-reported emotions. Based on these data, a meta-analysis provided some evidence of a positive benefit of a walk or run in a natural environment in comparison to a synthetic environment. There was also some support for greater attention after exposure to a natural environment but not after adjusting effect sizes for pretest differences. Meta-analysis of data on blood pressure and cortisol concentrations found less evidence of a consistent difference between environments across studies. Conclusions Overall, the studies are suggestive that natural environments may have direct and positive impacts on well-being, but support the need for investment in further research on this question to understand the general significance for public health.
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              Abiotic stresses and induced BVOCs.

              Plants produce a wide spectrum of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) in various tissues above and below ground to communicate with other plants and organisms. However, BVOCs also have various functions in biotic and abiotic stresses. For example abiotic stresses enhance BVOCs emission rates and patterns, altering the communication with other organisms and the photochemical cycles. Recent new insights on biosynthesis and eco-physiological control of constitutive or induced BVOCs have led to formulation of hypotheses on their functions which are presented in this review. Specifically, oxidative and thermal stresses are relieved in the presence of volatile terpenes. Terpenes, C6 compounds, and methyl salicylate are thought to promote direct and indirect defence by modulating the signalling that biochemically activate defence pathways. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Int J Environ Res Public Health
                Int J Environ Res Public Health
                ijerph
                International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
                MDPI
                1661-7827
                1660-4601
                05 December 2019
                December 2019
                : 16
                : 24
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Institute for Bioeconomy, National Research Council, 10 Via Madonna del Piano, I-50019 Sesto Fiorentino (FI), Italy; lorenzo.albanese@ 123456ibe.cnr.it
                [2 ]“Fiorenzo Gei” Scientific Committee, Italian Alpine Club, 2 Via del Mezzetta, I-50135 Firenze (FI), Italy
                [3 ]Laboratory of Monitoring and Environmental Modelling for the Sustainable Development (LaMMA Consortium), Via Madonna del Piano 10, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy; bartolini@ 123456lamma.rete.toscana.it
                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence: francesco.meneguzzo@ 123456ibe.cnr.it (F.M.); federica.zabini@ 123456ibe.cnr.it (F.Z.); Tel.: +39-392-985-0002 (F.M.); +39-333-379-2947 (F.Z.)
                Article
                ijerph-16-04915
                10.3390/ijerph16244915
                6950249
                31817339
                © 2019 by the authors.

                Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

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