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WILDFIRE SMOKE MAY SPREAD INFECTIOUS DISEASE

2 months ago | World Science & Technology News | 0 comments

By Xai Reyes

Scientist said that microbes and fungi can survive in large numbers in smoky plumes and smoke from wildfires could be a surprising new route for the spread of infections.

Researchers believed that it is likely that organism for the soil, known to cause infection, could be transferred in this way.

They argue that greater monitoring of wildfire smoke by health authorities is urgently needed.

For decades, it has been widely assumed that nothing much lives in a plume of wildfire smoke.

It has also been assumed that if smoke poses a threat to human health, it’s because it is full of particulate matter.

These microscopic particles of soot are known to be a severe irritant, causing respiratory and cardiovascular issues.

However, there has been growing concern that wildfire smoke could also carry infectious microbes or fungi.

The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC0 says that firefighters are at risk of coccidioidomycosis, a common infection caused by a fungus that becomes airborne when soils are disturbed.

Scientists are now beginning to uncover the scale of the potential infectious threat posed by smoke from wildfires.

Using new techniques to capture microbes in smoke, researchers say that they found over 900 different types of bacteria and around 100 unique fungi.

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