University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Spatial Bi-hourly Variation of Alternaria Spore Concentration in Worcester, UK

Apangu, Godfrey ORCID:, Frisk, Carl A. ORCID:, Adams-Groom, Beverley ORCID:, Petch, Geoffrey and Skjøth, C. ORCID: (2018) Spatial Bi-hourly Variation of Alternaria Spore Concentration in Worcester, UK. In: 11th International Congress on Aerobiology, 3-7 Sep 2018, Parma, Italy.

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Alternaria species are ubiquitous fungi affecting food security and human health. They are pathogenic on many economically important crops and allergenic to many sensitive people worldwide. Studies from Worcester, UK have shown high a concentration of Alternaria spores, most likely caused by agricultural activities. However, it is unknown whether Alternaria spore concentrations vary geographically throughout Worcestershire. An investigation on the spatial variation in bi-hourly concentration of Alternaria spores in Worcestershire during 2016 and 2017 was conducted. Spores were sampled using two Hirst-type Burkard spore traps at the University of Worcester. One on the rooftop of a building at St John’s Campus and another at Lakeside Campus approximately 7 km away. St John’s Campus is located in the centre of Worcester (52.1970, -2.2421), while Lakeside Campus is located in an agricultural environment (52.2537, -2.2535) with regularly cut grass in the near surroundings. Slides were counted using bi-hourly traverse at x 400 magnification. The total number of spores per slide were converted to the daily mean of spores m¯³ of air. There was a highly positive correlation in the concentration of Alternaria spores between the two sites in both 2016 and 2017. St John’s had the highest peak of spore concentration (213 m¯³) in 2016 and Lakeside had the peak concentration in 2017 (184 m¯³). Concentrations above 100 m¯³ of air were observed more frequently at Lakeside. The study revealed that Alternaria spore concentrations were higher at Lakeside than at St John’s. This could be attributed to spores released from either crops or agricultural activities (e.g. haying or harvesting) or from decomposed grass since the surrounding area is routinely managed. Further work in 2018 will include spore correlations with weather variables from a pair of weather stations located at each site, enabling studies caused by variations in weather and climate. Spatial variation in bi-hourly spore concentrations is useful information to atopic subjects, health experts and crop pathologists.

Keywords: Harvesting. Allergy. Fungal Spores.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: Aerobiology, Harvesting, Allergy, Alternaria fungal spores
Subjects: Q Science > QR Microbiology > QR180 Immunology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
R Medicine > RB Pathology
S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
Divisions: College of Health, Life and Environmental Sciences > School of Science and the Environment
Depositing User: Philliam Godfrey Apangu
Date Deposited: 18 Sep 2018 09:18
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2020 04:00

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