Mold allergy: is it real and what do we do about it?

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DOI: 10.1080/1744666X.2017.1324298


INTRODUCTION: fungi produce substances that contain pathogen-associated molecular patterns (pamps) and damage-associated molecular patterns (damps) which bind to pattern recognition receptors, stimulating innate immune responses in humans. they also produce allergens that induce production of specific ige. Areas covered: In this review we cover both innate and adaptive immune responses to fungi. Some fungal products can activate both innate and adaptive responses and in doing so, cause an intense and complex health effects. Methods of testing for fungal allergy and evidence for clinical treatment including environmental control are also discussed. In addition, we describe controversial issues including the role of Stachybotrys and mycotoxins in adverse health effects. Expert commentary: Concerns about long-term exposure to fungi have led some patients, attorneys and fungus advocates to promote fears about a condition that has been termed toxic mold syndrome. This syndrome is associated with vague symptoms and is believed to be due to exposure to mycotoxins, though this connection has not been proven. Ultimately, more precise methods are needed to measure both fungal exposure and the resulting health effects. Once that such methods become available, much of the speculation will be replaced by knowledge.

Journal Title

Expert Rev Clin Immunol





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MeSH Keywords

Adaptive Immunity; Allergens; Antibodies, Fungal; Antigens, Fungal; Fungi; Humans; Hypersensitivity; Immunity, Innate; Immunoglobulin E; Mycotoxins; Pathogen-Associated Molecular Pattern Molecules; Receptors, Pattern Recognition; Stachybotrys


Fungi; damp buildings; mold; mycotoxins; toxic mold syndrome

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