The team found that infants who were exposed to basidiospores and other airborne fungal spores--specifically penicillium/aspergillus and alternaria--early in life were more likely to develop allergies to mold, pollen, dust mites, pet dander and certain foods as they grew older.
This is the first study to show a relationship between specific airborne fungal spores and an increased risk for multiple allergies in children, the UC team reports in an upcoming edition of Pediatric Allergy and Immunology and an early online edition June 14.
A fungus is a plantlike organism that grows by releasing tiny reproductive cells (spores) into the air. Mold is a type of fungus that can grow on any moist surface--including wood, drywall and cement.
Previous allergy studies focused on visible mold or total mold concentrations, not the identification of specific airborne fungal spores. The UC-led study showed that exposure to specific airborne fungal spores may increase allergic reactions and others could help reduce them.
These findings reinforce the idea that not all fungi are created equal, says Tiina Reponen, PhD, professor of environmental health at UC and corresponding author on the study."It turns out that the health effects of airborne fungal spores are more complicated than we thought," she says. "It's not enough to look just at total mold in our homes and offices. We need to understand how specific types of mold interact with each other in the environment to affect our respiratory health. Some fungi can have harmful effects on the body, but others may be beneficial."
Osborne conducted this research while pursuing her master's at UC and is currently employed as an environmental consultant at Quantus Analytical, a mold and allergen laboratory and consulting group in Cincinnati.
Using a small air sampling device, the UC research team collected fungal spores from the homes of 144 infants enrolled in the Cincinnati Childhood Allergy and Air Pollution Study (CCAAPS).
The CCAAPS, funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, is a five-year study examining the effects of environmental particulates on childhood respiratory health and allergy development.
Air samples were collected for a total of 48 hours in the child's primary activity room and in the child's bedroom during sleep. Samples were analyzed for both total and individual spore counts.
"We found that, at least in children, some fungi may cause allergic sensitization while other fungal types may actually inhibit the development of allergies," explains Osborne.
"But very little is known about how infant allergies to environmental allergens develop," she adds, "and more research is needed before we will fully understand the impact of fungi as an allergen in infants."
If mold is found in the home, the UC team recommends following the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-accepted guidelines for removing it. They also say any moisture issues, such as roof or plumbing leaks, should be resolved immediately to avoid mold development. Additional information on household mold issues can be found at www.epa.gov/moldresources.html.
Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
What does congenital Zika syndrome look like?
24.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy