Document Type

Thesis

Date of Degree

Spring 2015

Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)

Degree In

Occupational and Environmental Health

First Advisor

Matthew W. Nonnenmann

Abstract

Detection of airborne influenza virus is needed in order to determine exposure and prevent and control infections. Few researchers have successfully detected airborne influenza virus in environmental settings with current bioaerosol samplers. Therefore, new sampling strategies should be considered to increase the likelihood of detection.

This study compared four bioaerosol samplers in collection of airborne influenza virus – the SKC Biosampler, NIOSH Biosampler, Andersen N6 single-stage impactor containing a liquid media, and the newly developed Next Generation Inhalable Aerosol Sampler (NGIAS). Ten 30-minute laboratory trials were completed by aerosolizing active influenza virus (H1N1) in a bioaerosol chamber to compare the ability of four bioaerosol samplers to collect aerosolized virus. Samples were analyzed using RT-qPCR.

The mean total virus particles per liter of sampled air (TVP) recovered with the NGIAS was significantly less than that measured by all other samplers (p < 0.001). The TVP recovered with the SKC Biosampler (111.41) and Andersen N6 sampler (102.36) was substantially larger than that recovered with the NIOSH Biosampler (58.59), however the difference in TVP between these samplers was not statistically significant (SKC – NIOSH p-value = 0.187 ; Andersen – NIOSH p-value = 0.297).

Our results demonstrated that liquid based bioaerosol samplers recovered more TVP than dry collection samplers. The high flow rate sampler, the Andersen N6, did not collect more TVP, but had a lower limit of detection than other samplers. Furthermore, the SKC Biosampler collected the most TVP. Therefore, future investigators should design a liquid based personal bioaerosol sampler to maximize the likelihood of influenza virus detection.

Public Abstract

The World Health Organization estimates annual influenza epidemics could generate up to 5 million cases of severe illness and 500,000 deaths worldwide. Few researchers have been successful in determining personal exposures to influenza viruses through the airborne route with samplers that are currently available. Therefore, new sampling strategies should be considered.

This study compared four samplers in the collection of airborne influenza virus – the SKC Biosampler, NIOSH Biosampler, Andersen N6 single-stage impactor containing a liquid media, and the newly developed NGIAS sampler. Ten 30-minute trials were completed by aerosolizing influenza virus (H1N1) in a laboratory chamber.

Analyses determined the NGIAS recovered significantly less viral particles per liter of sampled air (TVP) than all other samplers (p-value < 0.001). The TVP recovered by both liquid based samplers (SKC and Andersen N6) was substantially larger than that recovered by both dry collection based samplers (NIOSH and NGIAS). The high flow rate sampler, the Andersen N6, did not collect more TVP, but had a lower limit of detection than other samplers. Therefore, the Andersen N6 sampler may be more efficient at detecting influenza viruses in settings where virus concentrations are lower (hospitals, schools, daycares, etc.). Furthermore, the SKC Biosampler collected the most TVP. Future research should consider designing a liquid based personal sampler that operates at a high airflow rate to increase the probability of influenza virus detection.

Keywords

publicabstract, Airborne, Bioaerosol, Biosampler, Influenza, Sampling

Pages

viii, 80 pages

Bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 75-80).

Copyright

Copyright 2015 Laura Lucille Kienlen

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