Mold Removal

Extensive mold growth inside an occupied building is unacceptable and should be removed. Current mold removal guidelines recommend that all visually moldy porous materials that cannot be easily cleaned be discarded. Mold removal should be performed by qualified professionals equipped to be able to control the spread of dust and mold spores. The objectives of mold removal are to: Remove mold growth from interior services, Prevent cross-contamination or spread of mold spores and dust to … [Read more...]

Sampling For Mold Growth In Buildings

Mold growth is very common in damp building environments. During building assessment for mold growth, sampling is sometimes necessary. For example air sampling may be performed to determine whether visible mold growth has degraded indoor air quality. Air sampling may also help to determine the presence, location, and/or extent of suspected hidden mold growth. Air sampling is also used to determine the effectiveness of mold remediation. Interpretation of air sample results can be difficult if … [Read more...]

Control of Dry Rot Fungus, Serpula lacrymans

Conventional methods for eradicating dry rot are often drastic, involving the removal of infested wood and application of biocides to prevent re-infestation (see Dry Rot Fungus References). Popular beliefs are that eradication of dry rot is almost impossible and that the fungus is particularly resistant to treatment. These beliefs are misleading and arise mainly from the fact that Serpula lacrymans can survive for extended time periods in masonry and it can transport water and nutrients over … [Read more...]

Serpula lacrymans- Health Effects

Mycotoxins Currently there are no known mycotoxins produced by Serpula lacrymans that would be harmful to humans or animals. Irritation and inflammation No symptoms of irritation or inflammation have been attributed to Serpula sp. Allergic Reactions No allergen specific compounds that are known for this fungus. However, existence of asthma associated with Serpula lacrymans has been documented. The sensitizing role of this fungus was confirmed in atopic and asthmatic individuals by both skin … [Read more...]

Serpula lacrymans, the Cause of Dry Rot in Buildings

Serpula lacrymans spores

Serpula lacrymans, formerly Merulius lacrymans, is the cause of dry rot in buildings. The dry rot fungus belongs to the Division of Fungi, Basidiomycota (basidiomycetes). Other Basidiomycetes found on wood in North America include: Meruliporia incrassata, Gloeophyllum trabeum, Tapinella panuoides, Antrodia vaillantii, Coniophora puteana, Postia placenta and Antrodia serialis. Gloeophyllum sepiarium is also a common fungus on wood. Of these fungi Meruliporia incrassata and Serpula lacrymans have … [Read more...]

References For Dry Rot Fungus

Bryant, DH and Rogers, P. (1991). Allergic alveolitis due to wood-rot fungi. Allergy Proc. 12 (2), 89-94. Collectif CTBA. (1996). Insects and fungi of wood. Paris, CTBA. Duncan, C.G., F.F. Lombard (1965). Fungi associated with principal decays in wood products in the United States. U.S. Forest Service Research paper W0-4. Dept. of Agriculture,Washington. D.C. 30p. Ewen, RJ, Jones PR, Ratcliffe NM and Spencer-Phillips, PT (2004). Identification by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry of … [Read more...]

Dry Rot Fungus, Serpula lacrymans

The dry rot fungus, Serpula lacrymans, is regarded as the ‘cancer’ of buildings. Dry rot fungus thrives in dark, poorly ventilated, damp indoor environments. As such, it’s frequently able to spread extensively before the damage is noticed. The destructive nature of Serpula lacrymans has led to the belief that the dry rot fungus is indestructible and that the whole building would have to be demolished once infested. Serpula lacrymans, however, is vulnerable to dry conditions. Similar to all fungi … [Read more...]

Actinomycetes and Bacillus: Spore producing Bacteria

bacteria colonies

Actinomycetes and Bacillus are spore producing bacteria. Bacteria are single-celled organisms. While bacteria can be helpful and most are harmless, there exists harmful types of infectious bacteria that have the potential to make people extremely sick. Some bacteria produce endospores ( or internal spores) that may be allergenic. Endospores are resistant to hash environmental conditions. The most well know endospore (spore) producing bacteria belong to the genus Bacillus. Bacillus is a … [Read more...]

Fungi and Bacteria Spores

Indoor fungi and fungi-like bacteria produce spores. However, the most common spores in indoor air are mold spores. Other fungal spores (such as yeasts spores) and bacteria spores can also be found indoors. Mold spores are recognized allergens. It's the outer wall of the mold spores that is believed to elicit allergic reactions. Hyphal fragments can be allergenic as well. Mold is a problem in wet or damp indoor environments. Mold is often found growing on water-damaged building materials … [Read more...]