IAQ Radio Classics – Harriet Ammann, PhD – Remixed with a Video Transcript Added! (original air date 6-22-12)

Air Date: 5-4-2018|Episode 503

This week on IAQ Radio we unveil a new feature we are calling “IAQradio+ Classics. In the past we have done Flashback Friday’s where we simply replayed a show from the archives. IAQradio Classics+ will be much more than a replay. IAQradio Classics+ are live shows with a video transcript of the show. We are having some of our best shows transcribed and will remix then to include the transcription. We start this week with a fantastic show with Dr. Harriet Ammann.


Full Description:
This week on IAQ Radio we unveil a new feature we are calling “IAQradio+ Classics. In the past we have done Flashback Friday’s where we simply replayed a show from the archives. IAQradio Classics+ will be much more than a replay. IAQradio Classics+ are live shows with a video transcript of the show. We are having some of our best shows transcribed and will remix then to include the transcription. We start this week with a fantastic show with Dr. Harriet Ammann.
Dr. Ammann holds a Ph.D. degree in Zoology and Biochemistry from North Carolina State University. She was a diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology from 1989 through 2014. She taught cell, human, vertebrate and comparative animal physiology for 14 years before joining the US EPA Hazardous Air Pollutant and Indoor Air Teams in 1984. She was senior toxicologist for Environmental Health of the Washington State Department of Health for 12 years, and then held the same position with the Air Quality Program of the Washington State Department of Ecology for 4 years. While interested in toxic effects from exposure for any exposure route, she is especially interested in inhalation and has worked extensively in indoor and ambient air pollution. She was a member of the NAS Institute of Medicine Committee on Damp Indoor Spaces and Health, and authored the microbial toxicity of the book published by the IOM. She has been working on public health issues since 1984.
She is an affiliate associate professor in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences at the School of Public Health of the University of Washington, Seattle, Washington. She teaches in courses in Toxicology and Community Air Pollution at the University, and teaches in Healthy Building courses on moisture, microbes and health in the indoor environment in Washington and in Oregon, and has presented on updates on asthma and the epidemiology and toxicology of indoor mold exposure at the Washington Department of Health Epidemiology Program, and for the Washington 2014 Asthma Summit. She will retire from her affiliate with the University of Washington School of Public Health in July, 2018
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 the 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 those found 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.
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