Aerobiologia

, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 107–111

Ragweed in Australia

  • Diana J. Bass
  • Valerie Delpech
  • John Beard
  • Peter Bass
  • Ronald S. Walls
Article

Abstract

Ragweed (Ambrosia spp.) is awell-recognised cause of fall allergic rhinitisand seasonal asthma in the Northern Hemispherecountries of United States and Canada. InAustralia the appearance of ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia) was first recordedduring the 1930s in Queensland, ragweed hayfeverwas noted in 1959 and ragweed dermatitisdocumented in 1963. Aerobiology studies performedin the capital cities of Eastern and WesternAustralia have not demonstrated ragweed pollen.This study, performed in two towns in theNorthern Rivers area of New South Wales, closeto the Queensland border, documents the ragweedseason between November 1996 and December 1997in one of the towns, by monitoring the air usinga Burkard 7-day spore trap. Two hundred and sixvolunteers were skin tested to a range ofaeroallergens including pollen of ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia) and Tibouchina, a treeflowering at the same time as ragweed. 34% ofvolunteers were skin prick test positive toragweed and 5.4% to Tibouchina. The ragweedseason commenced in the first week of March andextended to early May, with the peak day pollencount, 483/m3, present in the first week ofApril. Although many residents blamed thespectacular purple Tibouchina flowers for latesummer respiratory symptoms, most were sensitiveto ragweed and not Tibouchina.

Australia pollen ragweed Tibouchina respiratory allergy Southern Hemisphere 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Arruda L.K., Rizzo M.C., Chapman M.D., Fernandez-Caldas E. et al.: 1991, Exposure and sensitization to dust mite allergens among asthmatic children in San Paola, Brazil. Clin Exp Allergy 21, 433-439.Google Scholar
  2. Bartlett H.: 1937, Ambrosia (Ragweed) and pascalia weed. Agric Gazette NSW 48, 3007.Google Scholar
  3. Bass D.J. and Morgan G.: 1997, A three year (1993-1995) calendar of pollen and Alternaria mould in the atmosphere of south western Sydney. Grana 36, 293-300.Google Scholar
  4. Boulet L.P., Turcotte H., Laprise C., Lavertu C., Bedard P.M., Lavoie A. and Hebert J.: 1997, Comparative degree and type of sensitization to common indoor and outdoor allergens in subjects with allergic rhinitis and/or asthma. Clin Exp Allergy 27, 52-59.Google Scholar
  5. Bradford M.M.: 1976, Rapid and sensitive methods for quantitation of microgram quantities of pollen utilizing the principle of protein-dye binding. Analyt Biochem 72, 248-254.Google Scholar
  6. Caraballo L., Puerto L., Fernandez-Caldas E., Lockey R.F. and Martinez B.: 1998, Sensitization to mite allergens and acute asthma in a tropical environment. Invest Allergol Clin Immunol 8(5), 281-284.Google Scholar
  7. Creticos P.S., Reed C.E., Norman P.S., Khoury M.S., Adkinson N.F., Buncher C.R., Busse W.W., Gadde J., Li J T. et al.: 1996, Ragweed Immunotherapy in adult asthma. J Allergy Clin Immunol 334, 501-506.Google Scholar
  8. D'Amato G., Spieksma F.T., Liccardi G., Jagar S., Russo M., Kontou-Fili K., Nikkels H., Wulthrich B. and Bonini S.: 1998, Pollen related allergy in Europe. Allergy 53, 567-578.Google Scholar
  9. Frenz D.A., Palmer M.A., Hokanson J.M. and Scamehorn R.T.: 1995, Seasonal characteristics of ragweed pollen dispersal in the United States. Ann Allergy Asthma & Immunol 75, 417-422.Google Scholar
  10. Lewis W.H., Dixit A.B. and Wedner H.J.: 1991, Asteraceae aeropollen of the Western United States Gulf Coast. Annals Allergy 67, 37-46.Google Scholar
  11. Lu D., Zhau P., Yu Q. and Zhang C.: 1994, Airway provocation test with ragweed pollen extract in Chinese asthmatics. Asian Pac J Immunol 12, 125-129.Google Scholar
  12. Mercer F.V.: 1939, Atmospheric pollen in the city of Adelaide and Environs Trans Roy Soc SA 63, 373-383.Google Scholar
  13. Ong E., Singh M.B. and Knox R.B.: 1995, Seasonal distribution in the atmosphere of Melbourne: an airborne pollen calendar. Aerobiologia 11, 51-55.Google Scholar
  14. Rutherford S., Owen J.A. and Simpson R.: 1997, Survey of airspora in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. Grana 36, 114-121.Google Scholar
  15. Sands C.S.: 1967, A pollen survey in Canberra. Med J Aust 1, 208-210.Google Scholar
  16. Skarrett D.B., Sutherst R.W. and Maywald G.F.: 1995, Computer software for predicting the effects of climate on plants and animals. Climex for Windows Version 1.0.Google Scholar
  17. Speck N.H.: 1953, Atmospheric pollen in the city of Perth and environ. J Roy Soc West Aust 1, 119-127.Google Scholar
  18. Sugaya A., Tsuda T. and Oguchi H.: 1997, Marked increase of atmospheric pollen dispersion of Ragweed (Ambrosia spp.)-annual change in atmospheric pollen counts of major allergen plants in autumn in Saitama prefecture. Aerugi 46, 585-593.Google Scholar
  19. Todzia C.A. and Almeda F.A.: 1991, A revision of Tibouchina section Lepidotae (Melastomataceae: Tibouchina). Proc. Calif. Acad. Sci 47: 175-206.Google Scholar
  20. Trinca J.C.: 1962, Pollens used in the treatment of hayfever and asthma in Eastern Australia. Med J Aust 1(25), 969-972.Google Scholar
  21. Tsai J.J., Kao M.H. and Huang S.I.: 1996, Comparison of major aeroallergens in Tapei and Kin-Men. J Formos Med Assoc 96, 985-989.Google Scholar
  22. Watt G.C.: 1987, Ragweed dermatitis and the distribution of ragweed in Australia. Aust J. Dermatol 28, 27-29.Google Scholar
  23. Wright G.L.: 1963, Ragweed pollinosis. Med J Aust 1, 910.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Diana J. Bass
    • 1
  • Valerie Delpech
    • 3
  • John Beard
    • 4
  • Peter Bass
    • 5
  • Ronald S. Walls
    • 6
  1. 1.Department Immunology and AllergyConcordRepatriation General HospitalAustralia
  2. 2.CroydonAustralia)
  3. 3.South Eastern Public Health ServiceRandwickAustralia
  4. 4.Northern Rivers Institute of Health andResearchLismoreAustralia
  5. 5.CroydonAustralia
  6. 6.Department Immunology and AllergyConcordRepatriation General HospitalAustralia

Personalised recommendations