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Mold Exposure During Infancy as a Predictor of Potential Asthma Development.

Exposure to mold has been associated with exacerbation of asthma symptoms in children. This article reports on how the presence of visible mold and exposure to (1-3)-?-D-glucan in infancy affects the risk of asthma at the age of 3 years as defined by an Asthma Predictive Index (API). Visible mold was evaluated by means of home inspection. (1-3)-?-D-glucan levels were measured in settled dust. Children were considered to be at high risk for asthma at later ages if they reported recurrent wheezing at the age of 3 years and met at least 1 of 3 major or 2 of 3 minor API criteria. Results indicated that children aged 3 years with high visible mold in the home during infancy were 7 times more likely to have a positive API than were those with no visible mold (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 7.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.2-12.6). In contrast, at low (1-3)-?-D-glucan levels (<22 ?g/g), children were at increased risk of a positive API (aOR, 3.4; 95% CI, 0.5-23.5), whereas those with high (1-3)-?-D-glucan levels (>133 ?g/g) were at decreased risk (aOR, 0.6; 95% CI, 0.2-1.6). Of the other covariates, mother&;s smoking was the strongest significant risk factor for the future development of asthma based on a positive API (aOR, 4.4; 95% CI, 1.7-11.6). The researchers concluded that the presence of high visible mold and mother&;s smoking during infancy were the strongest risk factors for a positive API at the age of 3 years, suggesting an increased risk of asthma. High (1-3)-?-D-glucan exposure seems to have an opposite effect on API than does visible mold. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2009;102(2):131-7.

Author: Iossifova YY, Reponen T, Ryan PH, et al

Published: 01/07/2009

Publication Type: Journal article

Publisher: Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology