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Ambient outdoor concentrations of airborne endotoxins and airborne gram-negative bacteria
were measured in a residential area. Further, the species composition of the airborne gram-negative bacterial flora was investigated. The results demonstrated that humans and other mammals are exposed to airborne endotoxins in the outdoor air, but at levels where a development of adverse health effects is unlikely. The total amount of inhalable endotoxins ranged from <3.0 EU/m3 to 27.8 EU/m3.
Airborne gram-negative bacteria were detected only at low concentrations (maximum 7.9 cfu/m3).
Most gram-negative bacterial isolates belonged to the family Enterobacteriaceae and Pseudomonadaceae.
Furthermore, the results of this study suggest that soil and vegetation are potential sources of airborne endotoxins and airborne gram-negative bacteria in the outdoor air of this environment.