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Eur J Dermatol. 2001 Nov-Dec;11(6):534-7.

Filamentous fungi and yeasts on mattresses covered with different encasings.

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Institute of Hygiene and Environmental Medicine, University of Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany.


Besides mites, filamentous fungi and yeasts play an important role as domestic allergens. Among different allergen avoidance strategies the efficacy of synthetic mattress encasings has been demonstrated for the reduction of house dust mites. Whether these synthetic encasings are also able to reduce the growth of fungi on the mattress under domestic conditions has not been assessed so far. To determine if the fungal growth on mattresses can be reduced by the use of synthetic encasings we assessed the fungal colonisation of mattresses covered either by conventional cotton encasings or by polyurethane encasings impermeable to particles > 3 mum. Within a 12-month period dust samples were obtained from the mattresses. Fungal quantities were measured by counting colonies on agar plates incubated at 20 degrees C and 37 degrees C. The counts of fungi were significantly higher on mattresses with cotton encasings. Penicillium spp. and Aspergillus spp. were isolated most frequently. Therefore the application of synthetic encasings with similar properties to the encasings used in this investigation is recommended as part of an allergen avoidance strategy for patients sensitised to fungal allergens.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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