Skip to main content


  • 206 Accesses


Cultural heritage constitutive materials can provide excellent substrates for microbial colonisation, highly influenced by thermo-hygrometric parameters. In cultural heritage-related environments, a detrimental microbial load may be present both on artworks surface and in the aerosol. Confined environments (museums, archives, deposits, caves, hypogea) are characterised by peculiar structures and different thermo-hygrometric conditions, influencing the development of a wide range of microbial species, able to induce artefact biodeterioration and to release biological particles in the aerosol (spores, cellular debrides, toxins, allergens) potentially dangerous for the human health (visitors/users). In order to identify the real composition of the biological consortia, highlighting also the symbiotic relationships between microorganisms (cyanobacteria, bacteria, fungi) and macro-organisms (plants, bryophyte, insects), an interdisciplinary approach is needed.

The results from in vitro culture, microscopy and molecular biology analysis are essential for a complete understanding of both microbial colonisation of the cultural objects and the potential relationship with illness to human. Concerning the bioaerosol, of crucial importance are the time and techniques for sampling.


  • Biodeterioration
  • Microbial colonisation
  • Preventive conservation

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
USD   119.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Softcover Book
USD   159.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info
Hardcover Book
USD   159.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Durable hardcover edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Purchases are for personal use only

Learn about institutional subscriptions


  1. 1.

  2. 2.

  3. 3.

  4. 4.

    EAN, European Aeroallergen Network; RIMA, Rete Italiana di Monitoraggio in Aerobiologia; REA, Red Española de Aerobiología; RNSA, Réseau National de Surveillance Aérobiologique (France); National Allergy Bureau (USA).

  5. 5.

    UNI 11108:2004—Method for sampling and counting airborne pollen grains and fungal spores (UNI, Italian standardisation body).

  6. 6.

    CEN EN 16868:2019—Ambient air—Sampling and analysis of airborne pollen grains and fungal spores for networks related to allergy—Volumetric Hirst method.


Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Paola De Nuntiis .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2022 The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG

About this chapter

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this chapter

Nuntiis, P.D., Palla, F. (2022). Bioaerosol. In: Palla, F., Barresi, G. (eds) Biotechnology and Conservation of Cultural Heritage. Springer, Cham.

Download citation