Airborne Bacteria in Outdoor Air and Air of Mechanically Ventilated Buildings at City Scale in Hong Kong across Seasons

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

1 Scopus Citations
View graph of relations

Related Research Unit(s)

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11732-11743
Journal / PublicationEnvironmental Science & Technology
Volume54
Issue number19
Online published27 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - 6 Oct 2020

Abstract

Studies of the indoor airborne microbiome have mostly been confined to a single location and time point. Here, we characterized, over the course of a year, the geographic variation, building-function dependence, and dispersal characteristics of indoor and outdoor airborne microbiomes (bacterial members only) of eight mechanically ventilated commercial buildings. Based on the Sloan neutral model, airborne microbiomes were randomly dispersed in the respective indoor and outdoor environments and between the two environments during each season. The dominant taxa in the indoor and outdoor environments showed minor variations at each location among seasons. The airborne microbiomes displayed weak seasonality for both indoor and outdoor environments, while a weak geographic variation was found only for the indoor environments. Source tracking results show that outdoor air and occupant skin were major contributors to the indoor airborne microbiomes, but the extent of the contribution from each source varied within and among buildings over the seasons, which suggests variations in local building use. Based on 32 cases of indoor airborne microbiome data, we determined that the indoor/outdoor (I/O) ratio of PM2.5 was not a robust indicator of the sources found indoors. Alternatively, the indoor concentration of carbon dioxide was more closely correlated with the major sources of the indoor airborne microbiome in mechanically ventilated environments.

Citation Format(s)

Airborne Bacteria in Outdoor Air and Air of Mechanically Ventilated Buildings at City Scale in Hong Kong across Seasons. / Zhou, You; Lai, Yonghang; Tong, Xinzhao; Leung, Marcus H. Y.; Tong, Jimmy C. K.; Ridley, Ian A.; Lee, Patrick K. H.

In: Environmental Science & Technology, Vol. 54, No. 19, 06.10.2020, p. 11732-11743.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review