Generation and characterization of indoor fungal aerosols for inhalation studies

Tidsskriftartikel - 2016


In the indoor environment people are exposed to several fungal species. Evident dampness is associated with increased respiratory symptoms. To examine immune responses associated with fungal exposure mice are often exposed to one species grown on an agar medium. The aim of this study was to develop an inhalation exposure system to be able to examine responses in mice to exposure to mixed fungal species aerosolised from fungal-infested building materials. Indoor airborne fungi were sampled and cultivated on gypsum boards. Aerosols were characterised and compared with aerosols in homes.Aerosols containing 107cfu of fungi/m3 air were generated repeatedly from fungal-infested gypsum boards in a mouse exposure chamber. Aerosols contained: Aspergillus nidulans, A.niger, A.ustus, A.versicolor, Chaetomium globosum, Cladosporium herbarum, Penicillium brevicompactum, P.camemberti, P.chrysogenum, P.commune, P.glabrum, P.olsonii, P.rugulosum, Stachybotrys chartarum and Wallemia sebi. They were all among the most abundant airborne species identified in 28 homes. Nine species from gypsum boards and 11 species in the homes are associated with water damage. Most fungi were present as single spores, but chains and clusters of different species and fragments were also present. The variation in exposure level during the 60 min of aerosol generation was similar to the variation measured in homes.Through aerosolisation of fungi, from the indoor environment, cultured on gypsum boards, it was possible to generate realistic aerosols in terms of species composition, concentration, and particle sizes. The inhalation-exposure system can be used to study: responses to indoor fungi associated with water damage and the importance of fungal species composition


Madsen AM, Larsen ST, Koponen IK, Kling K, Barooni A, Karottki DG, Tendal K, Wolkoff P. Generation and characterization of indoor fungal aerosols for inhalation studies. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 2016;82(8):2479-2493.
doi: 10.1128/AEM.04063-15

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