Can increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) have an effect on mold spore levels? A new study suggests that increased CO2 will, in fact, lead to a greater number of mold spores outdoors with a resulting effect on allergies. As CO2 levels rise, can we expect to see more allergies to mold?
The article describing the research is titled “Elevated Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Concentrations Amplify Alternaria alternata Sporulation and Total Antigen Production” and is found in this month’s Environmental Health Perspectives. The researchers were looking at just one species, Alternaria alternata, so we need to be cautious about drawing big conclusions from such a small study (sorry about the sensationalist blog title!).
The authors found that increased CO2 levels caused the mold to produce nearly three times the number of spores with more than twice the total antigenic protein. Conceivably, as CO2 levels rise in the atmosphere, outdoor molds will produce more allergy triggering spores, making life even more miserable for those with mold allergies.
To read the article in its entirety, please visit: EHP.