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Publisher: Springer-Verlag (Total: 2350 journals)

 Aerobiologia   [SJR: 0.511]   [H-I: 36]   [3 followers]  Follow         Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)    ISSN (Print) 1573-3025 - ISSN (Online) 0393-5965    Published by Springer-Verlag  [2350 journals]
• Introducing DNA-based methods to compare fungal microbiota and
concentrations in indoor, outdoor, and personal air
• Authors: Choa An; Cheolwoon Woo; Naomichi Yamamoto
Pages: 1 - 12
Abstract: Inhalation of airborne fungi is known to cause respiratory illnesses such as allergies. However, the association between exposure and health outcomes remains largely unclear, in part due to lack of knowledge about fungal exposure in daily life. This study aims to introduce DNA-based methods such as high-throughput sequencing (HTS) and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) to compare fungal microbiota and concentrations in indoor, outdoor, and personal air. Five sets of concurrent indoor, outdoor, and personal air samples were collected, each with duration of 4 days. Sequencing analysis revealed greater species richness in personal than indoor air for four out of the five sets, indicating that people are exposed to outdoor species that are not in indoor air. The personal–indoor (P/I) and personal–outdoor (P/O) ratios of total fungi were 1.2 and 0.15, respectively, suggesting that personal exposure to total fungi is better represented by indoor than outdoor concentrations. However, the ratios were taxon dependent, highlighting the complexity of generalizing personal exposure to the diverse kingdom Fungi. These results demonstrate that the HTS/qPCR method is useful for assessing taxon-specific fungal exposure, which might be difficult to achieve effectively using conventional, non-DNA-based techniques.
PubDate: 2018-03-01
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9490-6
Issue No: Vol. 34, No. 1 (2018)

• Phenotypic and genotypic diversity of airborne fungal spores in
Demänovská Ice Cave (Low Tatras, Slovakia)
• Authors: Rafał Ogórek; Bartosz Kozak; Zuzana Višňovská; Dana Tančinová
Pages: 13 - 28
Abstract: This paper is the first aero-mycological report from Demänovská Ice Cave. Fungal spores were sampled from the internal and external air of the cave in June, 2014, using the impact method with a microbiological air sampler. Airborne fungi cultured on PDA medium were identified using a combination of classical phenotypic and molecular methods. Altogether, the presence of 18 different fungal spores, belonging to 3 phyla, 9 orders and 14 genera, was detected in the air of the cave. All of them were isolated from the indoor samples, and only 9 were obtained from the outdoor samples. Overall, airborne fungal spores belonging to the genus Cladosporium dominated in this study. However, the spores of Trametes hirsuta were most commonly found in the indoor air samples of the cave and the spores of C. herbarum in the outdoor air samples. On the other hand, the spores of Alternaria abundans, Arthrinium kogelbergense, Cryptococcus curvatus, Discosia sp., Fomes fomentarius, Microdochium seminicola and T. hirsuta were discovered for the first time in the air of natural and artificial underground sites. The external air of the cave contains more culturable airborne fungal spores (755 colony-forming units (CFU) per 1 m3 of air) than the internal air (from 47 to 273 CFU in 1 m3), and these levels of airborne spore concentration do not pose a threat to the health of tourists. Probably, the specific microclimate in the cave, including the constant presence of ice caps and low temperature, as well as the location and surrounding environment, contributes to the unique species composition of aeromycota and their spores in the cave. Thus, aero-mycological monitoring of underground sites seems to be very important for their ecosystems, and it may help reduce the risk of fungal infections in humans and other mammals that may arise in particular due to climate change.
PubDate: 2018-03-01
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9491-5
Issue No: Vol. 34, No. 1 (2018)

• The effects of book disinfection to the airborne microbiological community
in a library environment
• Authors: Anna Micheluz; Sabrina Manente; Valeria Prigione; Valeria Tigini; Giovanna Cristina Varese; Giampietro Ravagnan
Pages: 29 - 44
Abstract: The management of fungal contaminants inside libraries and archives has become a big challenge for librarians, restorers and scientists. Several disinfection treatments have been developed in recent years, using both chemical and physical approaches on book collections and indoor environments. However, there is a lack of knowledge about the temporal efficiency of these cleanings, especially in relation with the preservation environments. The aim of this study was to determine the long-term effect of a chemical disinfection that interested a previous-contaminated book collection inside a University library. The monitoring after 6 months and 1 year from the cleaning confirmed any fungal growth on the disinfected books and the reduction of 90% of the airborne fungal load, highlighting anyway the presence of high fungal diversity. Sixty-eight different airborne fungal entities were isolated, in particular Aspergillus vitricola, Bulleromyces albus, Cladosporium cladosporioides, Cladosporium pseudocladosporioides, Cladosporium sphaerospermum, Penicillium brevicompactum, Rodothorula mugillaginosa and Sporodiobolus pararoseus. Several fungal species were sampled from the disinfected books, in particular Aspergillus penicillioides and Penicillium chrysogenum. The presence of these fungi both as airborne and as settled particles highlights the importance to maintain clean the preservation environments in order to prevent further microbial contaminations.
PubDate: 2018-03-01
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9492-4
Issue No: Vol. 34, No. 1 (2018)

• A comparative study of hourly and daily relationships between selected
meteorological parameters and airborne fungal spore composition
• Authors: Agnieszka Grinn-Gofroń; Beata Bosiacka; Aleksandra Bednarz; Tomasz Wolski
Pages: 45 - 54
Abstract: Air sampling was conducted in Szczecin (Poland) throughout April–September 2013. The final data set included 177 daily and 4248 hourly samples. The total of 21 types of spores, which occurred in a number >10 in the season, were taken into account. The following meteorological parameters were analyzed: air temperature, relative humidity, precipitation and wind speed. Effects of individual weather parameters on hourly and daily concentrations of different fungal spore types were examined using Spearman’s rank association test, whereas effects of complex of meteorological factors on hourly and daily compositions of spore were assessed using detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) and redundancy analysis (RDA). Airborne fungal spore distribution patterns in relation to meteorological variables were determined by RDA, after DCA results detected a linear structure of the spore data. The RDA results obtained indicated that all the applied variables accounted for 20 and 22% of the total variance in the hourly and daily spore data, respectively. The results of stepwise forward selection of variables revealed all included hourly and daily meteorological variables were statistically significant. The largest amount of the total variance in the spore composition was explained by the air temperature in both cases (16%). Multivariate ordination did not show large differences between the hourly and daily relationships (with exception of wind speed impact), while the differences between simple hourly and daily correlations were more clear. Correlations between daily values of variables were in most cases higher than between hourly values of variables.
PubDate: 2018-03-01
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9493-3
Issue No: Vol. 34, No. 1 (2018)

• Free orbicules of Cupressaceae detected in daily aerobiological samples by
optical and confocal microscopy
• Authors: Franco Ruggiero; Gianni Bedini
Pages: 55 - 62
Abstract: Members of Cupressaceae and Taxaceae are known to release large amounts of highly allergenic pollen grains into the atmosphere, which are responsible for the onset of pollinosis in many countries throughout the world. In addition to pollen grains, their pollen sacs produce orbicules, which are submicron particles reported to carry allergens and which are potentially able to reach much further down the respiratory tract than pollen grains. Previous research has postulated the presence of orbicules in the atmosphere; however, direct observations have not yet been reported. The aim of this research was to provide the first direct evidence that Cupressaceae orbicules are released into the atmosphere by detecting them in daily aerobiological samples. We observed pollen sacs, pollen grains, and orbicules of nine species of Cupressaceae using scanning electron microscope (SEM). We then used a light and confocal microscope, to examine daily aerobiological samples. Under SEM, we measured the orbicule size (0.494–0.777 µm) and detected unknown nanometric particles (130–200 nm). Under the light microscope, aerobiological samples showed clusters of stained dots surrounding the pollen grains of Cupressaceae. Under the confocal microscope, the same clusters were resolved into submicron particles with the same autofluorescence as the pollen grains. These features enabled us to identify them as orbicules. We believe that our findings help to explain the onset of pollinosis and allergic asthma related to Cupressaceae pollen grains in many countries, even before pollen grains are actually detected or after they are no longer observed in aerobiological monitoring samples.
PubDate: 2018-03-01
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9495-1
Issue No: Vol. 34, No. 1 (2018)

• DNA metabarcoding of airborne pollen: new protocols for improved taxonomic
identification of environmental samples
• Authors: Kleopatra Leontidou; Cristiano Vernesi; Johannes De Groeve; Fabiana Cristofolini; Despoina Vokou; Antonella Cristofori
Pages: 63 - 74
Abstract: Metabarcoding is a promising DNA-based method for identifying airborne pollen from environmental samples with advantages over microscopic methods. Sample preparation and DNA extraction are of fundamental importance for obtaining an optimal DNA yield. Currently, there is no standard procedure for these steps, especially for gravimetric pollen samplers. Therefore, the aim of this study was to develop protocols for processing environmental samples for pollen DNA extraction and for metabarcoding analysis and to assess the efficacy of these protocols for the taxonomic assignment of airborne pollen collected by gravimetric (Tauber trap) and volumetric (Hirst-type trap) samplers. Protocols were tested across an increasing complexity of samples, from pure single-species pollen to environmental multi-species samples. A short fragment (about 150 base pairs) of the chloroplast trnL gene was amplified using universal primers for plants. After PCR amplification, amplicons were Sanger-sequenced and taxonomic assignment was accomplished by comparison with a custom-made reference database including chloroplast DNA sequences from most of the anemophilous taxa occurring in the study area (Trentino, northern Italy), representing 46 plant families. Using the classical morphological pollen analysis as a benchmark, we show that DNA metabarcoding is efficient and applicable even in complex samples, provided that protocols for sample preparation, DNA extraction, and metabarcoding analysis are carefully optimized.
PubDate: 2018-03-01
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9497-z
Issue No: Vol. 34, No. 1 (2018)

• Enrichment of airborne Japanese cedar ( Cryptomeria japonica ) pollen in
mountain ranges when passing through a front accompanying temperate low
pressure
• Authors: Yuichi Takahashi; Shigeto Kawashima; Yusuke Suzuki; Nobuo Ohta; Seiji Kakehata
Pages: 105 - 110
Abstract: Values obtained by the real-time pollen monitors set up at 14 measuring points in the Tohoku region indicate that a large amount of Japanese cedar pollen was dispersed along the western region and northern flank of the Ou Mountain Range when a front accompanying the temperate low pressures passed through the west sea of northern Hokkaido. We are sure that this phenomenon is related to pollen enrichment by mountain ranges. The time at which highest concentrations of pollen grains were observed shifted from the western to the eastern side, in accordance with the path of the front. No pollen was seen after the passage of the cold front.
PubDate: 2018-03-01
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9494-2
Issue No: Vol. 34, No. 1 (2018)

• Improving the use of aerobiological and phenoclimatological data to
forecast the risk of late blight in a potato crop
• Authors: A. Seijo-Rodríguez; O. Escuredo; M. S. Rodríguez-Flores; M. C. Seijo
Abstract: The paper describes phenological and aerobiological monitoring conducted during 6 years on a potato crop. The progression of the phenological stages in relation with thermal time [growing degree-days (GDD) and physiological days (P-days)] was analyzed. The growing cycle for Kennebec variety required less than 120 days and mean values of 1700 GDD and 720 P-days to complete the phenological development. The presence of Phytophthora infestans in the environment was common in each crop cycle, but the maximum peaks of sporangia were detected a few days after the emergence of the plants. The growing cycles with lower maximum temperature had the highest presence of sporangia. Thus, significant negative correlations between mean temperature, maximum temperature, accumulated growing degree-days, accumulated physiological days and the concentration of P. infestans in the environment were found. Maximum temperature and accumulated growing degree-days of 5 previous days were the parameters that best estimated the P. Infestans concentration in the regression model applied, with an explained variance of the data of 33 and 34%.
PubDate: 2018-04-20
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9515-9

• Statistical techniques for modeling of Corylus , Alnus , and Betula pollen
concentration in the air
• Authors: Jakub Nowosad; Alfred Stach; Idalia Kasprzyk; Kazimiera Chłopek; Katarzyna Dąbrowska-Zapart; Łukasz Grewling; Małgorzata Latałowa; Anna Pędziszewska; Barbara Majkowska-Wojciechowska; Dorota Myszkowska; Krystyna Piotrowska-Weryszko; Elżbieta Weryszko-Chmielewska; Małgorzata Puc; Piotr Rapiejko; Tomasz Stosik
Abstract: Prediction of allergic pollen concentration is one of the most important goals of aerobiology. Past studies have used a broad range of modeling techniques; however, the results cannot be directly compared owing to the use of different datasets, validation methods, and evaluation metrics. The main aim of this study was to compare nine statistical modeling techniques using the same dataset. An additional goal was to assess the importance of predictors for the best model. Aerobiological data for Corylus, Alnus, and Betula pollen counts were obtained from nine cities in Poland and covered between five and 16 years of measurements. Meteorological data from the AGRI4CAST project were used as a predictor variables. The results of 243 final models (3 taxa  $$\times$$   9 cities  $$\times$$  9 techniques) were validated using a repeated k-fold cross-validation and compared using relative and absolute performance statistics. Afterward, the variable importance of predictors in the best models was calculated and compared. Simple models performed poorly. On the other hand, regression trees and rule-based models proved to be the most accurate for all of the taxa. Cumulative growing degree days proved to be the single most important predictor variable in the random forest models of Corylus, Alnus, and Betula. Finally, the study suggested potential improvements in aerobiological modeling, such as the application of robust cross-validation techniques and the use of gridded variables.
PubDate: 2018-04-16
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9514-x

• Quantifying the relationship between airborne pollen and vegetation in the
urban environment
• Authors: Athanasios Charalampopoulos; Maria Lazarina; Ioannis Tsiripidis; Despoina Vokou
Abstract: The goal of this study was to quantitatively assess the relationship linking vegetation and airborne pollen. For this, we established six sampling stations in the city of Thessaloniki, Greece. Once every week for 2 years, we recorded airborne pollen in them, at breast height, by use of a portable volumetric sampler. We also made a detailed analysis of the vegetation in each station by counting all existing individuals of the woody species contributing pollen to the air, in five zones of increasing size, from 4 to 40 ha. We found the local vegetation to be the driver of the spatial variation of pollen in the air of the city. Even at very neighbouring stations, only 500 m apart, considerable differences in vegetation composition were expressed in the pollen spectrum. We modelled the pollen concentration of each pollen taxon as a function of the abundance of the woody species corresponding to that taxon by use of a Generalized Linear Model. The relationship was significant for the five most abundantly represented taxa in the pollen spectrum of the city. It is estimated that every additional individual of Cupressaceae, Pinaceae, Platanus, Ulmus and Olea increases pollen in the air by approximately 0.7, 0.2, 2, 6 and 5%, respectively. Whether the relationships detected for the above pollen taxa hold outside the domain for which we have data, as well as under different environmental conditions and/or with different assemblages of species representing them are issues to be explored in the future.
PubDate: 2018-04-13
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9513-y

• Environmental analysis of airborne pollen occurrence, pollen source
distribution and phenology of Fraxinus angustifolia
• Authors: Alejandro Monroy-Colín; Inmaculada Silva-Palacios; Rafael Tormo-Molina; José María Maya-Manzano; Santiago Fernández Rodríguez; Ángela Gonzalo-Garijo
Abstract: Narrow-leafed ash (Fraxinus angustifolia) is a common polygamous tree growing on the banks of rivers in the western Mediterranean region. Pollination occurs during winter, and the tree’s pollen is among the most abundant during that season. This work aims to relate the phenology of pollen shedding, source tree distribution, meteorology and airborne pollen occurrence for the species. Aerobiological sampling was conducted in Badajoz (south-western Spain) using a Hirst volumetric sampler over 24 years (1993–2016). Trees were geo-localized in a circle 500 m in diameter surrounding the pollen sampler. During the last two periods, pollination phenology was studied in 10 specimens, five in the surroundings of the pollen station and five 3 km apart, at a frequency of 3–4 days on average. Moreover, a detailed analysis of pollen occurrence was conducted for these two periods. Daily data for the whole period and hourly data over the last 2 years were used, including pollen monitoring and meteorology. A comparison was made between pollen occurrence and source distribution. The main pollen season lasted on average 53 (28–75) days. Average values were less than 10 grains m−3, except for two periods of 23–24 grains m−3. Daily data and hourly data correlation with meteorology showed different signs in correlation analysis. Hourly analysis showed that the maximum concentration occurred just after noon. Most pollen was recorded at an average temperature of 9 °C. Analysis of pollen sources and pollen occurrence showed a close relationship between predominant wind directions and tree distribution. Peaks of phenology were not coincident with pollen peaks. No trends in pollination were found. Non-homogeneous distribution of pollen sources for Fraxinus angustifolia provided a suitable tool to demonstrate that wind direction plays a relevant role when aerobiological data are interpreted according to source distribution. A limitation in phenology analysis and aerobiological data was noted in the narrow-leafed ash species.
PubDate: 2018-03-05
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9512-z

• Influence of meteorological factors on the level and characteristics of
culturable bacteria in the air in Gliwice, Upper Silesia (Poland)
• Authors: Ewa Brągoszewska; Józef S. Pastuszka
Abstract: Numerous studies have focused on occupational and indoor environments because people spend more than 90% of their time in them. Nevertheless, air is the main source of bacteria in indoors, and outdoor exposure is also crucial. Worldwide studies have indicated that bacterial concentrations vary among different types of outdoor environments, with considerable seasonal variations as well. Conducting comprehensive monitoring of atmospheric aerosol concentrations is very important not only for environmental management but also for the assessment of the health impacts of air pollution. To our knowledge, this is the first study to present outdoor and seasonal changes of bioaerosol data regarding an urban area of Poland. This study aimed to characterize culturable bacteria populations present in outdoor air in Gliwice, Upper Silesia Region, Poland, over the course of four seasons (spring, summer, autumn and winter) through quantification and identification procedures. In this study, the samples of bioaerosol were collected using a six-stage Andersen cascade impactor (with aerodynamic cut-off diameters of 7.0, 4.7, 3.3, 2.1, 1.1 and 0.65 μm). Results showed that the concentration of airborne bacteria ranged from 4 CFU m−3, measured on one winter day, to a maximum equal to 669 CFU m−3 on a spring day. The average size of culturable bacterial aerosol over the study period was 199 CFU m−3. The maximal seasonally averaged concentration was found in the spring season and reached 306 CFU m−3, and the minimal seasonally averaged concentration was found in the winter 49 CFU m−3. The most prevalent bacteria found outdoors were gram-positive rods that form endospores. Statistically, the most important meteorological factors related to the viability of airborne bacteria were temperature and UV radiation. These results may contribute to the promotion and implementation of preventative public health programmes and the formulation of recommendations aimed at providing healthier outdoor environments.
PubDate: 2018-03-01
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9510-1

• Comparability between Durham method and real-time monitoring for long-term
observation of Japanese cedar ( Cryptomeria japonica ) and Japanese

• Authors: Kanako Watanabe; Tsuyoshi Ohizumi
Abstract: Japanese cedar (Cryptomeria japonica) pollinosis (JCP), affecting more than a quarter of the Japanese population, is a significant public health problem, due to its negative impact on daily activity. JCP patients have used the four-stage daily pollen deposition information based on the pollen monitoring over 20 years. However, the procedure for monitoring pollen was recently changed dramatically, to hourly average pollen concentration monitoring. In that type of monitoring, JCP patients cannot identify pollen exposure level because the relationship between hourly average pollen concentration and daily pollen deposition is unclear. Based on the parallel monitoring of concentration and deposition counts that we performed in Niigata prefecture, Eastern Japan, we found that the relationship between the daily pollen deposition (pollen cm−2 day−1) and the daily-average pollen concentration (pollen m−3) calculated from hourly average pollen concentration was not only statistically significant but also consistent with the aerodynamic properties of pollen. Using the relationship, we proposed new range criteria of hourly average pollen concentrations corresponding to the four stages of pollen deposition. Additionally, the conversion of pollen deposition to pollen concentration made the long-term trend analysis of the daily-average pollen concentration possible in this study area, and an increasing trend was identified at one site.
PubDate: 2018-02-24
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9511-0

• Diversity of airborne Cladosporium species isolated from agricultural
environments of northern Argentinean Patagonia: molecular characterization
and plant pathogenicity
• Authors: Carolina Virginia Temperini; Alejandro Guillermo Pardo; Graciela Noemí Pose
Abstract: Fungal spores are normal components of external environments. They have been reported to be associated with human, animal and plant diseases causing primary and opportunistic infections. Cladosporium is commonly the most frequently isolated genus from air samples, and its species are considered mainly saprophytic, but there is a wide variety of taxa that can cause adverse effects on human and animal health and also on plants. In this work, we aimed to record Cladosporium spores frequency of isolation in northern Argentinean Patagonia and to perform a molecular characterization based on actin gene complemented with EF1α and ITS genes. The ability of the pathogens to cause disease in pip fruits of Packham’s Triumph and Abate Fetel pears and red delicious apples was determined. Results confirmed Cladosporium spores as the main genera isolated from air samples, and the molecular characterization revealed the existence of 11 species in this region grouped in C. cladosporioides and C. herbarum complexes. Pathogenicity tests revealed that Cladosporium sp. cause disease on fruit. Abate Fetel was the most susceptible to infection. These results compose the first study in Argentina in respect of identification at species level of airborne Cladosporium spores, and furthermore, it is the first report in northern Patagonia and the high valley of Río Negro productive region. This knowledge can help farmers to take preventive measures in order to avoid biological damage.
PubDate: 2018-02-23
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9509-7

• The influence of meteorological parameters on Alternaria and Cladosporium
fungal spore concentrations in Beja (Southern Portugal): preliminary
results
• Authors: Elsa Almeida; Elsa Caeiro; Ana Todo-Bom; Raquel Ferro; Ana Dionísio; Ana Duarte; Luiz Gazarini
Abstract: Introduction Fungal spores constitute an important fraction of bioaerosols in the atmosphere. Objectives To analyse the content of Alternaria and Cladosporium spores in the atmosphere of Beja and the effect of meteorological conditions on their concentrations. Methodology The daily and hourly data of Alternaria and Cladosporium fungal spores concentration in the atmosphere of Beja were monitored from April 12, 2012 to July 30, 2014, based on the Portuguese Aerobiology Network methodology. The influence of meteorological conditions on the studied types of fungal spore concentrations was assessed through Spearman’s correlation analysis. Results During the study period, 20,741 Alternaria spores and 320,862 Cladosporium spores were counted. In 2013, there were 5,822 Alternaria spores and 123,864 Cladosporium spores. The absolute maximum concentrations of Alternaria and Cladosporium spores were recorded on November 8, 2013, with 211 and 1301 spores/m3, respectively. Temperature, insolation and wind direction parameters showed a positive correlation with Alternaria and Cladosporium spore levels, while relative humidity and precipitation presented a negative correlation, which is statistically significant. Wind speed only showed a statistically significant positive correlation in terms of Alternaria spore levels. Conclusion Alternaria and Cladosporium spores are present in the atmospheric air of Beja throughout the year, with the highest concentration period occurring during spring and autumn. There was a clear effect of meteorological parameters on airborne concentrations of these fungal spores.
PubDate: 2018-02-12
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9508-8

• How to prepare a pollen calendar for forecasting daily pollen
concentrations of Ambrosia, Betula and Poaceae'
• Authors: B. Šikoparija; O. Marko; M. Panić; D. Jakovetić; P. Radišić
Abstract: Forecasting daily airborne pollen concentrations is of great importance for management of seasonal allergies. This paper explores the performance of the pollen calendar as the most basic observation-oriented model for predicting daily concentrations of airborne Ambrosia, Betula and Poaceae pollen. Pollen calendars were calculated as the mean or median value of pollen concentrations on the same date in previous years of the available historic dataset, as well as the mean or median value of pollen concentrations of the smoothed dataset, pre-processed using moving mean and moving median. The performance of the models was evaluated by comparing forecasted to measured pollen concentrations at both daily and 10-day-average resolutions. This research demonstrates that the interpolation of missing data and pre-processing of the calibration dataset yields lower prediction errors. The increase in the number of calibration years corresponds to an improvement in the performance of the calendars in predicting daily pollen concentrations. However, the most significant improvement was obtained using four calibration years. The calendar models correspond well to the shape of the pollen curve. It was also found that daily resolution instead of 10-day averages adds to their value by emphasising variability in pollen exposure, which is important for personal assessment of dose-response for pollen-sensitive individuals.
PubDate: 2018-01-23
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-018-9507-9

• The dispersion characteristics of airborne pollen in the Shijiazhuang
(China) urban area and its relationship with meteorological factors
• Authors: Jia Li; Yue Cong Li; Zhen Zhang; Ying Li; Chun Yue Wang
Abstract: In this study, a Tauber pollen trap was used in the urban area of Shijiazhuang to monitor continuously the outdoor air pollen from 2007 to 2011. The trap was emptied at regular intervals (typically 15 days). The results show that airborne pollen assemblages are generally similar each year among 2007–2011 and are responsive to the flowering times of plants, being dominated by pollen from woody plants in the spring and by pollen from herbaceous plants in summer and autumn. Two peak pollen influx periods, especially for the main allergenic pollen taxa, are seen, one between early March to early June and a second between late August to early October. During the four seasons, the main pollen taxa are Juglans, Artemisia, Platanus, Populus, Chenopodiaceae, Urtica + Humulus, Rosaceae, Pinus, Poaceae, Cereals, Quercus, and Betula, and all taxa other than Rosaceae were confirmed by relevant studies to be allergenic pollen taxa. RDA analysis of pollen influx and meteorological factors shows that in spring, temperature and humidity have significant effects on the pollen influx of woody plants; in summer, humidity and precipitation have significant negative effects on pollen influx of herbaceous plants; in autumn, temperature, water vapor pressure, and precipitation have a significant positive influence on herbaceous pollen influx; in winter, there were no significant correlations between airborne pollen influx and meteorological factors. The results reveal the dispersion patterns of airborne pollen and provide an important reference to appropriate construction of urban green systems and the reliable reduction in regional pollinosis.
PubDate: 2017-11-16
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9501-7

• Effect of seasonal variation on aeromycoflora of Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh,
involved in allergic reactions
• Authors: Madhu Manikpuri; Kishan Lal Tiwari; Bhupendra N. Tiwary
Abstract: The biotic (bacteria, fungi, pollen grains, algae) and abiotic (dust mites) factors present in the atmosphere are responsible for the common allergic reactions in humans. Fungi are one of the major biotic factors resulting in allergic conditions and sometimes lead to fatal diseases affecting vital organs. A detailed survey was carried out for 2 years (from May 2014 to April 2016) to assess the seasonal distribution and comparative diversity of aeromycoflora present in the urban and rural areas of Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh (India). During the survey, a marked variation in the types of fungal isolates and their colonies were observed in the samples collected at study sites. The maximum number of fungal colonies was obtained in the month of October and November during the first and second year, respectively. Among the isolates, Aspergillus and Curvularia sp. were found with the highest percent frequency and percent contribution. The predominant fungal species observed during the survey were Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus flavus, Penicillium sp. and Alternaria alternata which are known to cause different types of diseases including allergy in human beings, suggesting the possibility of occurrence of fungal allergy in the human population of Bilaspur.
PubDate: 2017-11-13
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9500-8

• Correlations between weather conditions and airborne pollen concentration
and diversity in a Mediterranean high-altitude site disclose unexpected
temporal patterns
• Authors: L. Pace; L. Boccacci; M. Casilli; P. Di Carlo; S. Fattorini
Abstract: Relationships between meteorological factors and airborne pollen concentrations at high altitudes are virtually unknown. We used cross-correlation analyses to test the relationships between daily variation in meteorological factors (i.e. temperature, humidity and wind speed) and airborne pollen concentration, diversity (number of families and Shannon and Simpson diversity indices) and evenness (Pielou index) in an Apennine high-altitude site (Gran Sasso Massif, 2117 m elevation). In contrast to patterns observed at low altitudes, the temperature had a negative correlation with pollen abundance and diversity, whereas humidity had a positive correlation. The unexpected negative correlations with temperature can be explained with the particular position of our sampling site. Wind speed was positively correlated with pollen diversity and abundance in the short term, which can be explained by the fact that higher wind speed promotes both primary emission of pollen from the anthers and subsequent re-suspension. Evenness and wind speed were negatively correlated in the short term because of the different response of different species to meteorological conditions. In the longer term, the average concentrations of the various taxa tend to reach similar values, leading to increased values of diversity. Our finding of a decrease in pollen emission with increasing temperature has important implications for the study of the impacts of global change on high-altitude plant communities. We also detected a high abundance of Cupressaceae/Taxaceae pollen, a reflection of the expansion of thermophilic species, such as Juniperus, due to climate change.
PubDate: 2017-10-17
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9499-x

• Airborne fungi as indicators of ecosystem disturbance: an example from
selected Tatra Mountains caves (Poland)
• Authors: Wojciech Pusz; Maria Król; Tomasz Zwijacz-Kozica
Abstract: We report on the determination of the spore concentration and the species composition of the airborne fungi in selected caves of the Tatra Mountains, Poland. The following caves were surveyed: Mylna, Obłazkowa, Mroźna, Zimna and Naciekowa. The sampling was carried out in July 2015 and in January 2016. The aeromycological analyses were performed with the impact method, using the Air Ideal 3P apparatus and potato dextrose agar (PDA, Biocorp) culture medium. In the course of the July 2015 analysis, 17 species of fungi were isolated and 11 species were isolated in January 2016. In Mylna and Naciekowa caves, the dominant species were Cladosporium cladosporioides and Stachybotrys cylindrospora. In Obłazkowa cave, Rhizoctonia predominated and in Zimna cave—the colonies of the yeast-like fungi, along with S. cylindrospora. In Mroźna cave, Penicillium notatum was the most abundant taxon. In the winter time, in the majority of the caves Penicillium spp. predominated, with the exception of Mroźna and Naciekowa caves where Aspergillus niger was dominant. We propose that aeromycological monitoring be performed regularly in the following caves: Mroźna, Naciekowa and Zimna.
PubDate: 2017-09-27
DOI: 10.1007/s10453-017-9498-y

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