Comparison of Endotoxin Exposure Assessment by Bioaerosol Impinger and Filter-Sampling Methods

Document Type


Peer Reviewed


Publication Date


Journal/Book/Conference Title

Applied and Environmental Microbiology

DOI of Published Version



Environmental assessment data collected in two prior occupational hygiene studies of swine barns and sawmills allowed the comparison of concurrent, triplicate, side-by-side endotoxin measurements using air sampling filters and bioaerosol impingers. Endotoxin concentrations in impinger solutions and filter eluates were assayed using the Limulus amebocyte lysate assay. In sawmills, impinger sampling yielded significantly higher endotoxin concentration measurements and lower variances than filter sampling with IOM inhalable dust samplers. Analysis of variance for repeated measures showed that this association remained after controlling for other factors such as replicate, sawmill, sawmill operation, wood type, and interaction terms. Endotoxin concentrations in the swine barns were 10-fold higher on average than in sawmills. These samples demonstrated comparable endotoxin concentration estimates for impinger and filter methods although the variability was lower using the impinger method. In both occupational settings, side-by-side replicates were more uniform for the impinger samples than for the filter samples. This study demonstrates that impinger sampling is an acceptable method for quantitation of area endotoxin concentrations. Further, when sampling is performed with impingers for airborne microorganism quantitation, these same impinger solutions can yield valid endotoxin exposure estimates, negating the need for additional filter sampling.



Published Article/Book Citation

Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 67:6 (2001) pp.2775-2780. DOI:10.1128/AEM.67.6.2775-2780.2001.

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