Bacteria, Fungi and Endotoxin in Stored Timber Logs and Airborne Sawdust in Poland

  • Jacek Dutkiewicz


Stored timber often is colonized by bacteria (Greaves, 1971; Rossell et al., 1973) and fungi (Levy, 1975) which may cause its decay (Käärik, 1975). While the infected wood is processed in sawmills, papermills, or furniture factories and used as a fuel, people could be exposed through inhalation to potentially allergenic or toxic microorganisms (Wimander and Belin, 1980; Thörngvist and Lundström, 1982). In current studies of this hazard, the main focus has been on fungi. Many fungal species or genera have been implicated in the etiology of the cases of hypersensitivity pneumonitis and other pulmonary diseases, resulting from the inhalation of wood dust. The more common of associated fungi are Cryptostroma corticale (Towey et al., 1932; Emanuel et al., 1966), Aureobasidium pullulans and Graphium (Cohen et al., 1967), Alternaria tenuis (Schlueter et al., 1972), Aspergillus fumigatus (Terho et al., 1980; Minârik et al., 1983), and Penicillium (Avila and Lacey, 1974; Van Assendelft et al., 1985; Dykewicz et al., 1988). Large concentrations of fungi, ranging from 102 to 108 colony forming units (cfu) per cubic meter of air were found in the air contaminated with wood dust (Terho et al., 1980; Wilhelmsson et al., 1984; Jäppinen et al., 1987; Kolmodin-Hedman et al., 1987). Among suspected disease-causing agents, thermophilic actinomycetes Thermoactinomyces vulgaris (Terho et al., 1980) and Saccharomonospora viridis (Greene et al., 1981) were listed.


Wood Sample Pinus Sylvestris Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis Waste Wood Airborne Fungus 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jacek Dutkiewicz
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Immunology Section, Division of Respiratory Disease StudiesNational Institute for Occupational Safety and HealthMorgantownUSA
  2. 2.Institute of Agricultural MedicineLublinPoland

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