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What is Acremonium Mold?

Acremonium is a genus of fungus that consists of approximately 100 species. The presence of this slow-growing, prolific mold can be detected by its unpleasant stench in the air.

Acremonium is potentially toxic if ingested. Individuals who are allergic to this fungus can experience nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. It can cause nail infections, corneal ulcers, endocarditis, and meningitis. As an opportunistic infection, it often occurs because of steroid therapy, indwelling catheters, immunosuppressive drugs or post-surgery infection. Other illnesses include arthritis, osteomyelitis, peritonitis and pneumonia.

Acremonium MoldThe mycotoxins produced by this type of mold, under certain conditions, are potent inhibitors of DNA, RNA and breakdown of protein in the body. This mold is being studied extensively due to significant concern over its potential abuse, specifically with regard to biological warfare. These mycotoxins and variants are a carcinogen, having the ability to destroy the immune system, internal organs, bone marrow and brain.

How to Identify Acremonium Mold
Due to the fact that this type of fungus tends to live inside drywall and insulation, it can be quite difficult to locate. Moreover, it is often a problem identifying the spores on spore traps, as they are rather colorless, awfully small, and do not feature any distinctive characteristics.

Generally speaking, acremonium colonies are often gray, white, pink, or orange in color, and if found early, are verytypically moist in the early stage. If the fungus has been thriving for a greater amount significant period of time, it may have a powdery texture. Given the subtle differences between the various types of mold, it may still be difficult to classify the mold as acremonium.

Facts about Acremonium
Since its first identification from a sewer sample in 1948, by Italian scientist Giuseppe Botzu, to its first production as cephalothin (cefalotin) by Eli Lilly in 1964, the acremonium fungus has provided us with knowledge of the good, the bad and the ugly of many other molds. We do not want to live with this mold - its presence in our home should be eradicated as soon as possible.

Here are some facts:

  • Its natural habitat is decaying or dead plant material and soil
  • Found in wet cellulose- based building materials
  • Can develop in food
  • Grows well in interior areas with high levels of humidity
  • Spores are spread by insects, water droplets or carried by the wind
  • An allergen that can cause hay fever, asthma, infection and other serious diseases
  • Used to make an important antibiotic, the Cephalosporins
  • Has the potential to produce mycotoxins called Trichothecene

From Lethal to Helpful
The antibiotic produced from the fungus, cephalosporium acremonium, belongs to the same group of antibiotics as the mold-derived medicine, Penicillin, which has saved countless lives over the years. Whereas, the acremonium molds can cause disease such as pneumonia, skin infections and urinary tract infections, cephalosporins are the most widely used drug to treat these illnesses. Since this medication is so closely related to penicillin, patients who are allergic to one medication may also be allergic to the other. Side effects of treatment with these medications include increased production of fungus in the mouth, called thrush, and a fungal vaginal infection.

Tips to Control Mold
If you have leaks in the house or puddles of water in the basement, you can expect mold growth, and it can be difficult to eliminate. Make sure your house is well ventilated by opening windows or using a fan to keep air circulating. Immediately remove wet or water damaged articles such as rugs and upholstered furniture, and if the items cannot be thoroughly cleaned and dried, get rid of them.

If there are signs of this fungus you suspect that your home may contain acremonium, it is important to locate it, and destroy it as soon as possible, whether by doing it yourself or by calling a professional. Once the mold has been eradicated from the premises, ensure that it is not given a chance to mature again. Render by rendering the area as dry as possible, and maintaining it that way. You can purchase either a mold detector or a dehumidifier in order to be constantly aware of the temperature humidity levels in sections of the house where mold is prone to grow.

Although there are numerous antifungal medications are available to fight infection, these medications drugs do not always produce successful results.
Last but most important: If you have any type of persistent allergy symptoms or fungal infection, do not hesitate in consulting your health care provider.

Author info: Carol C. is a registered nurse with experience in many areas of nursing who specializes in mental health and addictions. Her articles allow her the opportunity to share her knowledge and expertise on many health subjects.


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