250th Show with Harriet Ammann, Ph.D., D.A.B.T.

Air Date: 6-22-2012| Episode: 250

Come celebrate number 250 with us as we interview one of today’s prominent figures in the IEQ Industry! Harriet Ammann, PhD, DABT is a legend in the IAQ world and our guest for this week...

Full Description:

Come celebrate number 250 with us as we interview one of today’s prominent figures in the IEQ Industry! Harriet Ammann, PhD, DABT is a legend in the IAQ world and our guest for this week. Dr. Ammann is currently Principal, Ammann Toxicology Consulting LLC; & an affiliate associate professor, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington. Harriet M. Ammann has been a diplomat of the American Board of Toxicology since 1989. Up to 2006 Dr. Ammann was the Senior Toxicologist: Air Quality Program, Washington State Department Ecology and prior to that she served as the Senior Toxicologist: Office of Environmental Health Assessment Services, Washington State Department of Health. Before serving with the State of Washington, Dr. Ammann participated in the U.S. EPA’s Hazardous Air Pollutants team that was developing guidance for non-cancer risk assessment. Dr. Ammann served as vice-chair of the Bioaerosols Committee of the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) from 1997-2003. She authored the chapter on Microbial VOCs in the ACGIH book, Bioaerosols, Assessment and Control, and contributed to several other book chapters. She also served as assistant editor to the book. Dr Ammann has co-authored and been a key influence in the development of countless publications widely used today by indoor environmental professionals. Don’t miss this very important show as we interview one of today’s industry pioneers! The Z-man and Radio Joe are happy to deliver another awesome and unique show for their loyal listeners.


Z-Man’s Blog:

Harriet Ammann, PH. D., DABT

According to toxicologist Harriet Ammann, Ph.D., DABT, we can’t not breathe so whatever is in the air will affect us.

Nuggets mined from today’s show:
•National Ambient Air Quality Standards- Clean Air Act 6 criteria pollutants: carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, particle pollution and sulfur dioxide. The Clean Air Act has reduced deaths from air pollution.
•Microbial Volatile Organic Compounds-MVOCs have a characteristic musty moldy odor. Both bacteria and fungi can produce MVOCs. MVOCs are metabolites produced only while mold is living. MVOCs are organic because they contain carbon chains. Alcohols and ketones are also MVOCs. Alcohols and ketones generally don’t have noticeable odors unless present in high concentrations such as in a bakeries, breweries or taverns. Some medical professionals can recognize certain bacteria by their characteristic odor.
•Simple and profound answer as to whether someone’s environment has a mold problem, “if you see it or smell it, you have it.”
•While activated carbon can remove MVOCs, its best to resolve the moisture problem.
•All molds produce glucans. Glucans are structural molecules of mold cell walls. Glucans are human irritants and possible allergens.
•In its 1999 bioaerosols book the ACGIH wanted to analyze air pollutants of biological origin that effect workers. Among the bioaerosols of concern are thosefound in damp and wet indoor environments and those generated during metal cutting operations.

•Mycotoxins are not gasses.
•Mold is a catchall word, like weeds used to refer to plants we don’t want.
•Inhalation exposure may be allergenic, toxic or infectious. Endotoxin means toxin within.When cell walls of some bacteria rupture they release endotoxin. Exotoxin means toxin outside, molds put toxins into the environment as they compete for resources.

•Humans ingest their food before digesting it, molds do not have a digestive system so they must digest their food before ingesting it. Molds digest foot by producing enzymes (proteins) which may be allergenic.
•Most mold exposure (70%-90%) is caused by fungal fragments and small particles <1 microns.
•Surface area of small particles is tremendous, one gram of diesel soot (carbon particles of 0.2 microns average size) has the surface are of 2 tennis courts.
•A risk assessment is very deep science because it quantifies the allowable regulatory level defining what is safe. Requires knowing critical effect and lowest and no effect levels of exposure from long-term studies
•We know how to do prevention.
•We know how to prevent moisture damage.
Today’s Music: “Growing Mold” by the Radioactive Chickenheads, and

“Celebration” by Kool and the Gang.

Z-Man signing off