Document Detail

The effect of sub-floor heating on house-dust-mite populations on floors and in furniture.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  14635817     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
It is well known that dehydrating conditions for house dust mites can be created by simply raising the temperature, causing loss of body water and eventually death. Thus, it can be expected that conditions for dust mites are less favourable on floors supplied with sub-floor heating. This was examined in a study of 16 houses with sub-floor heating and 21 without. The pattern of changes in air humidity and temperature on the floors was investigated and compared to known data of the tolerance of dust mites. Also the resident mite populations were compared. Floors with sub-floor heating had, on average, fewer mites, but the difference with unheated floors was small. It was remarkable that mite numbers were also lower in upholstered furniture. Another important observation was that some houses with sub-floor heating had high mite numbers, indicating that this type of heating is compatible with a thriving mite population. Temperature and humidity conditions of heated floors may allow mites not only to survive, but also to remain active in winter. A moderate increase in temperature, a moderate decrease in (absolute) air humidity, or a combination of both, will suffice to keep the humidity all winter below the Critical Equilibrium Humidity, the level of air humidity that is critical for mite growth and reproduction, hence for allergen production. However, it is argued that measures to suppress allergen production by house dust mites are likely to be far more effective if taken in summer rather than in winter.
Rob de Boer
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Experimental & applied acarology     Volume:  29     ISSN:  0168-8162     ISO Abbreviation:  Exp. Appl. Acarol.     Publication Date:  2003  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2003-11-25     Completed Date:  2004-01-28     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8507436     Medline TA:  Exp Appl Acarol     Country:  Netherlands    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  315-30     Citation Subset:  IM    
Section Population Biology, University of Amsterdam, Kruislaan 320, 1098 SM Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
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MeSH Terms
Air Pollution, Indoor*
Floors and Floorcoverings
Heating / methods*
Interior Design and Furnishings
Mite Infestations / microbiology*
Pyroglyphidae / growth & development*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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