The black mold, Stachybotrys chartarum, is the mold feared most by the general public. It’s one of the molds used as indicators of moisture damage in a building. Black mold thrives on wet materials rich in cellulose. It’s commonly isolated from soil and decaying plant matter such as straw. In buildings black mold is found growing on very wet gypsum board, wallpaper, cotton fabrics and textiles, and other materials containing cellulose.
Unlike some other indoor molds such as Aspergillus and Penicillium that produce dry spores, spores of black mold (Stachybotrys) are produced in wet form. This means that the spores of Stachybotrys do not easily become airborne until they dry out or get disturbed say during renovations. Therefore, if pre-remediation air samples, for example, contain a few spores of black mold, it’s important to try and locate the source of those spores. The mold is most likely to be located in areas with a history of moisture damage.
Medical Significance Of Black Mold
While black mold is highly publicized as the cause of all sorts of health problems, it’s medical significance still remains controversial.
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Dr. Jackson Kung'u works for MBL, a laboratory that specializes in identification and enumeration of mold and bacteria commonly detected in air, fluids and bulk samples collected from homes, schools, offices, hospitals, industrial, agricultural, and other work environments. Jackson also provides a unique Mold Training Course on How to Recognize Indoor Mold, Develop Effective Sampling Strategies, Interpret Laboratory Results and how to Control Mold Growth.