Asthma: pacifiers, plasticizers, and microbes

After some off-line dialogue related to my “Should you lick your baby’s dropped pacifier?” blog post, I have decided to post a separate comment regarding the hygiene hypothesis, mentioned in the introduction, and the plasticizer hypothesis, emphasized by some off-line correspondents. What is clear is that in the modern, human-occupied indoor environment, there are microbes …

New study from UK: closing windows increases infection risk

UPDATED AT BOTTOM – TURNS OUT NEWS STORY WAS VERY MISLEADING Wow.  Just got pointed to this news story: BBC News – Closing hospital windows ‘increases infection risk’.  It reports on work from Cath Noakes from the University of Leeds.  The work is published in a non open-access journal “Building and Environment” which I do not …

Meeting Report on the “1st Hospital Microbiome Project Workshop”

A new meeting report is out in the SIGS journal: The Hospital Microbiome Project: Meeting Report for the 1st Hospital Microbiome Project Workshop on sampling design and building science measurements, Chicago, USA, June 7th-8th 2012. | Smith | Standards in Genomic Sciences.  The report discusses a meeting involving many interested in microbiology of the built environment …

Making the Human Health Connection: Healthy Buildings, Healthy People, Healthy Communities

The Health in Buildings Roundtable will meet Tuesday, April 23rd from 8 to 4:30 at the Natcher Center on the NIH campus in Bethesda. The line-up includes a diverse set of speakers and topics. We saw nothing in the program posted on line mentioning microbial ecology, microbiology, or microbes, but the program might be of …

Sloan-funded research: environmental scientists as communicators

Lee Ann Kahlor and her team at the University of Texas Interviewed nearly fourscore U.S. researchers in academia, government, defense and private industry to try to understand researchers’ perceptions of the challenges and opportunities for science communication to a wider audience (lay and decision makers). Here is what Dr. Kahlor said about the work: “Two …

Building science journals – a partial list and links to more

Many reliable and credible scientific journals related to building science most relevant to the microbiology of the built environment are listed here. These are selected based on our personal experience and judgment and do not constitute a comprehensive or definitive list. Indoor Air — International Journal of Indoor Environment and Health Indoor Air provides a …

Building “science” blogs (?)

Many recent microbe.net post links to “blog of the day” provide diverse, interesting reading related to microbial ecology. To identify some worthwhile “building science” blogs, we contacted some of the most knowledgeable building scientists we know. The results suggest some observations comparing building science and microbial ecology. Both domains (“fields,” “disciplines”) are highly diversified, ranging …

Proposed ASHRAE Standard on Prevention of Legionellosis – public comment invited

[edited from the ASHRAE press release] Changes to clarify requirements in a proposed standard are open for public comment. The proposed ASHRAE standard, 188P, Prevention of Legionellosis Associated with Building Water Systems, specifies what must be done to control the spread of legionellosis. The standard helps facility managers/owners understand how to apply the available information …

Guidelines: travel-related Legionnaire’s Disease investigation

After recognition of recent incidents of Legionnaires’ Disease in hospitals, more attention is being paid to Legionella spp by hotels and other travel industry members. In 1986, several European countries formed the European Working Group for Legionella Infections (EWGLI) to share knowledge about monitoring potential sources of Legionella as well as to provide technical guidelines …