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Cladosporium A genus of mold which can be found within indoor environments. Cladosporium is the most common of the so-called black molds. It produces a black pigment that protects it from ultraviolet light. This characteristic as well as its growth and dispersal characteristics is likely responsible for its presence and abundance in the environment.
Clinical Information Certain species are pathogenic (harmful to human health) and it sometimes causes severe illness to those who are affected. Causes severe infections when it comes in contact with small cuts or abrasions on the skin. Prolonged exposure can weaken the immune system allowing opportunistic bacteria and viruses to infect the host. Cladosporium may be linked to some cases of impotence. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC's) are attributed to this mold at certain stages of its existence. It produces no major mycotoxins of concern. Airborne molds such as Cladosporium not only cause severe allergies but in large amounts can severely effect asthmatics and persons with other restrictive airway diseases
Cladosporium spp. These genera of mold are pigmented dark green to black in the front, and black on the reverse with a velvety to powdery texture. One of the most commonly isolated from indoor and outdoor air, Cladosporium spp. are found on decaying plants, woody plants, food, straw, soil, paint, textiles, and the surface of fiberglass duct liner in the interior of supply ducts. There are over 30 species in the Cladosporium genus. The most common are C. elatum, C. herbarum, C. sphaerospermum, and C. cladosporioides. These fungi are the causative agents of skin lesions, keratitis, nail fungus, sinusitis, asthma, and pulmonary infections. Acute symptoms of exposure to Cladosporium are edema and bronchiospasms, and chronic exposure may lead to pulmonary emphysema.
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