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Title: Airborne bacteria and fungal spores in the indoor environment. A case study in Singapore
Authors: Goh, I.
Obbard, J.P. 
Viswanathan, S. 
Huang, Y.
Issue Date: 2000
Citation: Goh, I.,Obbard, J.P.,Viswanathan, S.,Huang, Y. (2000). Airborne bacteria and fungal spores in the indoor environment. A case study in Singapore. Acta Biotechnologica 20 (1) : 67-73. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: The concentration of airborne fungal spores and bacteria as related to room temperature, humidity and occupancy levels within a library building in Singapore was determined. Measurement of indoor air quality with respect to microorganisms is of particular importance in tropical environments due to the extensive use of air-conditioning systems and the potential implications for human health. This study has revealed a number of interesting relationships between the concentrations of fungal spores and bacteria in relation to both environmental and human factors. The levels of fungal spores measured in the indoor environment were approximately fifty times lower than those measured outside, probably because of the lowered humidity caused by air-conditioning in the indoor environment. The variation in fungal spore concentration in the outdoor environment is likely to be due to the diurnal periodicity of spore release and the response to environmental factors such as, light temperature and humidity. The indoor concentration of fungal spores in air was not clearly correlated to concentrations measured in air outside of the library building and remained relatively constant, unaffected by the difference in the numbers of occupants in the library. In contrast, the indoor concentrations of bacteria in air were approximately ten times higher than those measured outdoors, indicating a significant internal source of bacteria. The elevated levels of indoor bacteria were primarily attributed to the number of library occupants. Increased human shedding of skin cells, ejection of microorganisms and particulates from the respiratory tract, and the transport of bacteria on suspended dust particles from floor surfaces probably accounts for the strong positive correlation between occupancy levels and the concentration of bacteria in internal air.
Source Title: Acta Biotechnologica
ISSN: 01384988
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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