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Clinical and Developmental Immunology
Volume 11, Issue 1, Pages 87-96
http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10446670410001670544

Relationship between Pollen Counts and Weather Variables in East-Mediterranean Coast of Turkey

1Faculty of Medicine, Department of Pediatric Allergy and Immunology, Çukurova University, Turkey
2Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Ankara, Turkey
3Faculty of Biology, University of Ankara, Turkey

Copyright © 2004 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Background: Aeroallergen sampling provides information regarding the onset, duration and severity of the pollen season that clinicians use to guide allergen selection for skin testing and treatment.

Objectives: This atmospheric survey reports (1) airborne pollen contributions in Adana in one-year period (2) pollen onset, duration and peak level (3) the relationship between airborne pollen and selected meteorological variables and; (4) effects on symptoms in pollen allergic children.

Methods: Pollen sampling was performed with a volumetric Burkard Spore Trap. Meteorological data were measured daily from April 2001 to April 2002. Asthma symptom scores were investigated in 186 pollen allergic children that were on follow up in pediatric allergy outpatient clinics during same period.

Results: Average measurements included 82.5% tree pollen, 7.7% grass pollen and 9.8% herb pollen 54 taxa were identified during one year. The most prominent tree pollens were Cupressaceae, Eucalyptus and Pinus. The most common herb was Chenopodiaceae pollen family. When airborne pollen levels were examined in relation to single meteorological conditions; daily variations in total pollen counts were not significantly correlated with any variable studied (humidity, rainfall, temperature and wind) (p>0.05). On the other hand, statistically significant relationship between pollen concentration and symptom scores were found (p>0.05). Positive correlations were seen between both Gramineae and Herb pollen, and humidity and rainfall from March to July. However, positive correlations were detected between tree pollen counts and temperature and humidity in May and June.

Conclusion: This survey is the first volumetric airborne pollen analysis conducted in the survey area in Adana. This study suggested that the effects of weather on pollen count and symptom scores in this population could not be clearly identified with the evaluation of one-year data. However, pollen counts had effect on allergic symptoms in pollen allergic children. Examination of the complex interaction of multiple whether parameters would perhaps more fully elucidate the relationship between meteorology and aerobiology and provide the clinician with information necessary to forecast pollen prevalence. An awareness of the ever chancing, local aeroallergen patterns requires regular monitoring. Such awareness serves as a useful guide in the effective testing and treatment of atopic patients.