There are few studies on associations between respiratory health and allergens, fungal and bacterial compounds in schools in tropical countries. The aim was to study associations between respiratory symptoms in pupils and ethnicity, chemical microbial markers, allergens and fungal DNA in settled dust in schools in Malaysia. Totally 462 pupils (96%) from 8 randomly selected secondary schools in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, participated. Dust was vacuumed from 32 classrooms and analysed for levels of different types of endotoxin as 3-hydroxy fatty acids (3-OH), muramic acid, ergosterol, allergens and five fungal DNA sequences. Multiple logistic regression was applied. Totally 13.1% pupils reported doctor's diagnosed asthma, 10.3% wheeze and 21.1% pollen or pet allergy. Indian and Chinese children had less atopy and asthma than Malay. Carbon dioxide levels were low (380-690 ppm). No cat (Fel d1), dog (Can f 1) or horse allergens (Ecu cx) were detected. The levels of Bloomia tropicalis (Blo t), house dust mite allergens (Der p 1, Der f 1, Der m 1) and cockroach allergens (Per a 1 and Bla g 1) were low. There were positive associations between levels of Aspergillus versicolor DNA and daytime breathlessness, between C14 3-OH and respiratory infections and between ergosterol and doctors diagnosed asthma. There were negative (protective) associations between levels of C10 3-OH and wheeze, between C16 3-OH and day time and night time breathlessness, between cockroach allergens and doctors diagnosed asthma. Moreover there were negative associations between amount of fine dust, total endotoxin (LPS) and respiratory infections. In conclusion, endotoxin at school seems to be mainly protective for respiratory illness but different types of endotoxin could have different effects. Fungal contamination measured as ergosterol and Aspergillus versicolor DNA can be risk factors for respiratory illness. The ethnical differences for atopy and asthma deserve further attention.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the morphological and biological properties of a locally produced "Bovine Bone Sponge" for use in dentistry. Bovine bone sponge was prepared from local calf bone. Endotoxin level and surface properties were investigated. The pore size and water uptake ability were measured and results were compared with the commercial haemostatic agent. The material was tested for its haemostatic property and its inhibition of alveolar bone resorption in a sheep model following dental extraction. Results revealed a significant difference in haemostatic effect, and a shorter bleeding time and a lower rate of alveolar bone resorption in bovine bone sponge compare to a commercial haemostatic agent.
OBJECTIVE: To examine the associations between endotoxin and (1,3)-β-glucan concentrations in office dust and respiratory symptoms and airway inflammation among 695 office workers in Malaysia.METHODS: Health data were collected using a questionnaire, sensitisation testing and measurement of fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO). Indoor temperature, relative air humidity (RH) and carbon dioxide (CO₂) were measured in the offices and settled dust was vacuumed and analysed for endotoxin and (1,3)-β-glucan concentrations. Associations were analysed by two level multiple logistic regression.RESULTS: Overall, 9.6% of the workers had doctor-diagnosed asthma, 15.5% had wheeze, 18.4% had daytime attacks of breathlessness and 25.8% had elevated FeNO (≥25 ppb). The median levels in office dust were 11.3 EU/mg endotoxin and 62.9 ng/g (1,3)-β-glucan. After adjusting for personal and home environment factors, endotoxin concentration in dust was associated with wheeze (P = 0.02) and rhinoconjunctivitis (P = 0.007). The amount of surface dust (P = 0.04) and (1,3)-β-glucan concentration dust (P = 0.03) were associated with elevated FeNO.CONCLUSION: Endotoxin in office dust could be a risk factor for wheeze and rhinoconjunctivitis among office workers in mechanically ventilated offices in a tropical country. The amount of dust and (1,3)-β-glucan (a marker of indoor mould exposure) were associated with Th2 driven airway inflammation.
Endotoxin is a type of pyrogen that can be found in Gram-negative bacteria. Endotoxin can form a stable interaction with other biomolecules thus making its removal difficult especially during the production of biopharmaceutical drugs. The prevention of endotoxins from contaminating biopharmaceutical products is paramount as endotoxin contamination, even in small quantities, can result in fever, inflammation, sepsis, tissue damage and even lead to death. Highly sensitive and accurate detection of endotoxins are keys in the development of biopharmaceutical products derived from Gram-negative bacteria. It will facilitate the study of the intermolecular interaction of an endotoxin with other biomolecules, hence the selection of appropriate endotoxin removal strategies. Currently, most researchers rely on the conventional LAL-based endotoxin detection method. However, new methods have been and are being developed to overcome the problems associated with the LAL-based method. This review paper highlights the current research trends in endotoxin detection from conventional methods to newly developed biosensors. Additionally, it also provides an overview of the use of electron microscopy, dynamic light scattering (DLS), fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) and docking programs in the endotoxin-protein analysis.