Moisture requirements for fungi

General Class
Type Fungi
Water Requirements
Hydrophilic Fungi
Fusarium Rhisopus, Stachybotrys spp
Minimum Aw >0.9
Colonize continuosly wet materials, e.g.
Wallboard, humidifiers, drip pans.
Mesophillic Fungi
Most Mycelial Fungi; Alternaria,
Epicoccum, Ulocladium
Minimum Aw >0.9
Optimum Aw >0.9
Colonize chronically damp materials,
e.g. damp wallboard, fabrics, Xerotolerant fungi
also can grow under these conditions.
Xerotolerant Fungi
Cladosporium spp, aspergillus versicolor
Eurotium (Aspergillus glaucus group),
some penicillium spp
Minimum Aw <0.8 Optimum Aw >0.8
Colonise relatively dry materials, e.g.
house dust at high relative humidity.
Xerophillic Fungi
Aspergillus Restrictus
Minimum Aw <0.8
Colonise dry materials e.g.
house dust at moderate relative humidity

Source: American Council Of Govermental and Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH), Bioaerosols: Assessment and Control.

Fungi Health Effects Source
Aspergillus Hypersensitivity Aspergillosis Damp Organic Matter
Penicillium Hypersensitivity Damp Organic Matter
Fungal Spores Asthma, Rhinitis Damp Organic Matter
Ulocladium Headache Damp Organic Matter

A substance (pollen, spores) that induces an allergic state or reaction.

A potentially harmful substances produced by fungi, especially moulds.

Substances (proteins, carbohydrates) that stimulate an immune response in people. Affected persons may have an asthma attack, eye irritation, rhinitis, or increased airway restriction. Usually proteins, antigens are smaller allergens.

The human immune system’s exaggerated response to an allergen.

A condition marked by recurrent attacks of difficult or laboured breathing and wheezing resulting from spasmodic contraction and hyper-secretion of the bronchi.

An allergic condition that usually effects the skin or lungs. Once exposure to a substance has caused a reaction, the individual may be sensitised to it further exposure may elicit an adverse reaction even at low levels.

Part of the outer wall of a gram-negative bacteria, Endotoxin can cause fever, changes in white blood cell counts, increased airway resistances, shock and even death.


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