General Information about basidiospores
Where would I normally find this type of mold?
Ubiquitous, Cosmopolitan. Distributed by wind and released during periods of high humidity or rain.
Where does it grow outside?
Gardens, forests and woodlands.
Where does it grow inside?
Dry rot, wood rot and brown rot are all the result of basidiospores producing fungi. However, in the vast majority of cases, basidiospores detected in air samples are not from indoor growth. They are typically brought in through windows and doors. Because of this, mold remediation is typically not required.
Is this “black mold”?
The term black mold (also “toxic black mold”) is not scientific but is widely used by the media to usually reference Stachybotrys molds.
Is it a potential allergen?
Some of people may experience hay fever, asthma, Lycoperdonosis and mushroom culture hypersensitivity.
Does it present any unique human risks? (as pathogen, opportunist or contaminant)*
Some reports have shown this to be the cause of opportunistic infections.
Can it produce toxins?**
Poisoning (toxicosis) is usually attributable to ingestion of mushrooms that produce the following toxins: amanitins, monomethyl-hydrazine, muscarine, ibotenic acid, and psilocybin.
Can it be identified via Air Sampling?
Yes. However, Basidiospores are not indicative of an indoor mold growth problem. While they are extremely common in the outside air, they do not grow well inside of homes. Therefore, a high level of Basidiospores does not indicate your home has active mold growth. These particular spore are found in very high quantities in the outside air. They drift into your home via normal air leakage through windows, doors, clothing, pets, etc. This often leads to mold test results with seemingly high levels of Basidiospores. This should not be interpreted as a mold growth concern, but rather an indication of outside air infiltrating the home. For those with mold allergies, this infiltration of Basidiospores can cause health issues. Ideally, we prefer to bring fresh air into the home via a fresh air filter and pre-filter the air with the furnace filter.
Can it be identified via Direct Sampling?
Rarely identified except when sampling area of dry rot, wood rot or brown rot.
What are some of its industrial uses?
One species (A. pullulans) produce pullulan which is a biodegradable polysaccharide processed into fibers and used for packaging food and drug products.
Some mushrooms are non wood rotting and should be submitted to laboratory for accurate identification.