Allergenic fungi in deteriorating historic objects of Shahrekord Museum, in Iran

Article Information:


Group: 2011
Subgroup: Volume 4, Issue 4, Autumn
Type: Original Article

Authors:

  • Azizollah Ebrahimi
  • Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Science, Shahrekord University, P. O. Box: 115, Postal Code, 88186/34141, Shahrekord, Iran
  • Saeid Karimi
  • Department of Animal Science, Agricultural College of Tarbiat Modares, Tehran, Iran
  • Sharareh Lotfalian
  • Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Science, Shahrekord University,P.O.Box: 115, Postal Code, 88186/34141, Shahrekord, Iran
  • Fariba Majidi
  • Department of Restoration and Conservation, Isfahan Art University, Isfahan, Iran

      Correspondence:

      Affiliation: Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Science, Shahrekord University, P. O. Box: 115, Postal Code, 88186/34141
      City, Province: Shahrekord,
      Country: Iran
      Tel: +98381 4424427
      Fax: +98381 4424427
      E-mail: A_kahrizsangi@yahoo.com

Abstract:


Introduction and objective: Presence of fungi in exhibition and storage spaces of museums may be dangerous to museum professionals and users. The aim of the present study was to assess the level of allergenic fungi in deteriorating historic objects of the Shahrekord Museum collection.

Materials and methods: In this investigation, samples of 115 deteriorating historic objects aged from 50 to 200 years were inoculated on Sabouraud dextrose agar and incubated up to two weeks at 28°C in order to isolate fungal contaminants.

Results: Samples of 105 items (91.3%) were positive for the presence of fungi. The most common isolated fungi were Aspergillus spp. (32.9%), Penicillium spp. (19.1%), and Madurella spp. (5.2%). The number for Zygomycota was 17.3%. Differences in contamination rates between fabrics, leather made and wooden objects for Aspergillus spp. and Penicillium spp. were statistically significant (P<0.05).

Conclusion: In fabrics Aspergillus spp. and Zygomycota, in leather made objects Aspergillus spp. and Penicillium spp. and in wooden objects Zygomycota, Aspergillus spp. were dominant moulds. Majority of isolated species were common allergens.

Significance and impact of the study: Most of the isolated fungi are allergenic and can cause adverse human health effects in both museum workers and users.

Keywords: Allergenic fungi; Museum; Aspergillus; Penicillium