Trichothecene Mycotoxins in Some Water-Damaged Buildings

Tapani Tuomi1 Ph.D., Lauri Saarinen M.Sc., Sanna Lappalainen Lic. Phil., Outi Lindroos M.Sc., Marjo Nikulin Ph.D., Kari Reijula M.D., Ph.D. Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, Uusimaa Regional Institute, Helsinki, Finland, e-mail

Bulk samples of moldy interior finishes, settled dust, contact inoculated microbiological samples (mixed cultures), as well as pure cultures isolated from indoor environments, were subjected to the qualitative and semi-quantitative simultaneous analysis of 12 trichothecenes. The analysis method was developed as a result of the present study and it includes extraction, sample pre-treatment and reverse-phase HPLC-separation with following tandem mass spectrometric identification and quantitation using electrospray ionization on a quadrupole ion trap mass analyzer.

Similarly to previous studies on fodder or foods, contaminated with trichothecene producing moulds, diacetoxyscirpenol and T-2 toxin were the most prevalent trichothecenes. Apart from these, 3-acetyl-deoxynivalenol, T-2 tetraol, verrucarol and roridin A were occasionally present, particularly in samples contaminated with Fusarium or Stachybotrys spp. Satratoxins G and H were also found on rare occasions, especially from sites with a severe occurrence of Stachybotrys spp. All examined sites were Finnish water-damaged buildings, with confirmed health implications, resulting from fungal propagation.