Concentration and size distribution of microbial aerosol in the historical objects in Kraków as a potential health risk and biodeterioration factor

Maria Jolanta Chmiel , Iga Kral , Anna Lenart-Boroń


Historical facilities such as churches, crypts, libraries and museums are crucial for preserving cultural heritage but at the same time, they are frequently visited tourist objects and working environment. The aim of this study was to assess whether there are differences in the concentration and size distribution of bacterial and fungal aerosol in the mentioned groups of historical objects in Kraków, as well as to determine if there is tendency for seasonal fluctuations of bioaerosol concentrations, and what environmental parameters affect them most significantly. The concentrations of bacterial and fungal aerosol were measured in ten historical objects—churches, crypts, libraries and museums—using a six-stage Andersen impactor. Microbiological analyses were accompanied by measurements of particulate matter (PM10, PM4, PM2.5 and PM1) and microclimatic parameters. The results showed that the studied objects differ in terms of bioaerosol levels, but the differences were not drastic and in terms of bacterial aerosol concentrations the objects can be arranged as follows: churches > libraries > museums > crypts, while for fungal aerosol the order would be: churches > museums > crypts > libraries. The concentrations of bioaerosol did not exceed the safety levels for human exposure, but the levels suggesting possible threat of biodeterioration and the presence of internal source of contamination were exceeded in nearly all sites. The share of respirable fraction of bioaerosol was high (42.1–90.5% for bacteria and 80.7–94.7% for fungi). Bioaerosol concentration was most significantly associated with indoor temperature, and the impact of particulate matter was only moderate.
Author Maria Jolanta Chmiel (FoAaE / DoM)
Maria Jolanta Chmiel,,
- Department of Microbiology
, Iga Kral (FoAaE / DoM)
Iga Kral,,
- Department of Microbiology
, Anna Lenart-Boroń (FoAaE / DoM)
Anna Lenart-Boroń,,
- Department of Microbiology
Journal seriesAerobiologia, ISSN 0393-5965, e-ISSN 1573-3025, (N/A 70 pkt)
Issue year2019
Publication size in sheets37.15
Keywords in EnglishBioaerosol, Historical objects, Indoor air quality, Particulate matter
ASJC Classification2723 Immunology and Allergy; 1110 Plant Science; 2403 Immunology
Internal identifierWRE/2019/83
Languageen angielski
LicenseJournal (articles only); author's original; Uznanie Autorstwa (CC-BY); after publication
Concentration and size distribution of microbial aerosol in the historical objects in Kraków as a potential health risk and biodeterioration factor of 13-11-2019
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Score (nominal)70
Score sourcejournalList
Publication indicators WoS Citations = 0; Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2018 = 0.998; WoS Impact Factor: 2018 = 1.931 (2) - 2018=2.155 (5)
Citation count*
Additional fields
FinansowanieThis study was funded by the statutory measures of the University of Agriculture—Grant No. DS 3159/KM.
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