Exposure levels of animal allergens, endotoxin, and \(\beta\)-(1,3)-glucan on a university campus of veterinary medicine

  • \(\bf Objectives\) The study aimed to determine the allergen, endotoxin and \(\beta\)-(1,3)-glucan concentrations at various areas on a university campus of veterinary medicine. \(\bf Methods\) Dust samples were collected four times a year for three years using electrostatic dust collectors (EDC) at 25 different locations on a campus of veterinary medicine and in laboratories of inorganic chemistry as a control area representing animal-free environment. Major animal allergens from dog, cat, horse, cattle and mouse, domestic mite (DM) allergens, and \(\beta\)-(1,3)-glucan were measured using enzyme immunoassays and endotoxin using the limulus amoebocyte lysate (LAL) assay. Seasonal, annual and local influences on exposure levels were analyzed using Bayesian mixed models. \(\bf Results\) With the exception of mouse allergens, all other determinants were found in almost all locations on the campus and in the control area, but in up to 10.000-fold variable concentrations. By far the highest levels of feline, canine, equine and bovine allergens were detected in buildings where the respective species were examined. The highest levels of mouse and DM allergens, \(\beta\)-(1,3)-glucan and endotoxin occurred together and were associated with locations where large animals were present. In buildings without animals, allergen levels were considerably lower but still elevated at several locations compared to the control area, especially for dog and horse allergens, and \(\beta\)-(1,3)-glucan. Significant seasonal effects were observed for dog, cat, horse and DM allergens, and \(\beta\)-(1,3)-glucan. Variations between years were less apparent than between seasons (except for \(\beta\)-(1,3)-glucan). \(\bf Conclusions\) The strongest influencing factor on the concentration of mammalian allergens was the presence of the corresponding animal at the collection site. Seasonal influence on allergen concentrations was observed, while the overall exposure remained constant over the years. At locations with horses, elevated levels of mite allergens, endotoxin, and \(\beta\)-(1,3)-glucan can be expected, probably due to passive transfer from stable environment.

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Author:Eva ZahradnikORCiDGND, Ingrid SanderORCiDGND, Anne LotzORCiDGND, Verena LiebersGND, Ingrid ThullnerGND, Sabine TackeGND, Monika RaulfORCiDGND
Parent Title (English):PLoS ONE
Place of publication:San Francisco
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2024/03/12
Date of first Publication:2023/07/13
Publishing Institution:Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universitätsbibliothek
Tag:Open Access Fonds
Issue:7, Article e0288522
First Page:e0288522-1
Last Page:e0288522-17
Article Processing Charge funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) and the Open Access Publication Fund of Ruhr-Universität Bochum.
Institutes/Facilities:Institut für Prävention und Arbeitsmedizin der Deutschen Gesetzlichen Unfallversicherung
Dewey Decimal Classification:Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / Medizin, Gesundheit
open_access (DINI-Set):open_access
Licence (English):License LogoCreative Commons - CC BY 4.0 - Attribution 4.0 International