Markers of upper airway inflammation associated with microbial exposure and symptoms in occupants of a water-damaged building.
Akpinar-Elci M; White SK; Siegel PD; Park J-H; Visotcky A; Kreiss K; Cox-Ganser JM
Am J Ind Med 2013 May; 56(5):522-530
BACKGROUND: Water damage in buildings has been associated with reports of upper airway inflammation among occupants. METHODS: This survey included a questionnaire, allergen skin testing, nasal nitric oxide, and nasal lavage on 153 participants. We conducted exposure assessments of 297 workstations and analyzed collected dust for fungi, endotoxin, and (1-->3)-ß-D-glucan to create floor-specific averages. RESULTS: Males had higher levels of nasal inflammatory markers, and females reported more symptoms. ECP, IL-8, and MPO were significantly associated with nasal symptoms, flu-like achiness, or chills. Fungi and glucan were positively associated with blowing out thick mucus. Endotoxin was significantly associated with ECP in overall models, and with ECP, IL-8, MPO, and neutrophils among non-atopic females. CONCLUSIONS: In this study, we documented an association between endotoxin and nasal inflammatory markers among office workers. The results of our study suggest that a non-allergic response may contribute to symptoms occurring among occupants in this water-damaged building.
Exposure-levels; Microorganisms; Risk-factors; Respiratory-irritants; Respiration; Respiratory-system-disorders; Respiratory-infections; Pulmonary-system; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Pulmonary-function; Pulmonary-disorders; Questionnaires; Skin-tests; Nitrates; Humans; Men; Women; Work-environment; Workers; Fungi; Endotoxins; Indoor-air-pollution; Indoor-environmental-quality;
Author Keywords: building-related symptoms; indoor air quality; nasal lavage; nasal nitric oxide
Sandra K.White, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health,1095 Willowdale Road, MS-2800, Morgantown, WV 26505
American Journal of Industrial Medicine