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Chemosphere. 1999 Aug;39(5):795-810.

Species-specific production of microbial volatile organic compounds (MVOC) by airborne fungi from a compost facility.

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Institute for Hygiene and Environmental Medicine, University Hospital, Technical University of Aachen, Germany.


Thirteen airborne fungal species frequently isolated in composting plants were screened for microbial volatile organic compounds (MVOC), i.e., Aspergillus candidus, A. fumigatus, A. versicolor, Emericella nidulans, Paecilomyces variotii, Penicillium brevicompactum, Penicillium clavigerum, Penicillium crustosum, Penicillium cyclopium, Penicillium expansum, Penicillium glabrum, Penicillium verruculosum, and Tritirachium oryzae. Air samples from pure cultures were sorbed on Tenax GR and analyzed by thermal desorption in combination with GC/MS. Various hydrocarbons of different chemical groups and a large number of terpenes were identified. Some compounds such as 3-methyl-1-butanol and 1-octen-3-ol were produced by a number of species, whereas some volatiles were specific for single species. An inventory of microbial metabolites will allow identification of potential health hazards due to an exposure to fungal propagules and metabolites in the workplace. Moreover, species-specific volatiles may serve as marker compounds for the selective detection of fungal species in indoor domestic and working environments.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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