The amount of mouse allergen found in the air in many inner-city homes could be significant enough to trigger asthma symptoms in children say researchers.
According to researchers children living in inner-city homes are continuously exposed to the allergy-causing substance found in mouse urine that is circulating in the air and exposure increases their risk for developing allergic sensitivity to mice, just as it does for laboratory workers who work with rodents.
Prior to this study, airborne mouse allergens had not been measured in inner-city homes, and their relationship to settled dust mouse allergen levels was unknown. Researchers conducted a study which involved 100 inner-city, school-age children with asthma. Each of the children underwent skin testing, and their homes were inspected to measure air and settled dust in their bedrooms.
In conclusion researchers say airborne mouse allergen levels in many inner-city homes may be similar to those found in animal facilities, where levels are significantly high and will elicit asthma symptoms. Thus to reduce the amounts of mouse allergens, researchers recommend rodent exterminations, sealing holes and cracks in homes, and educating families to clean up all food remains.