2011-05-24 08:55:14Ragweed and Mold Lead Overall Upswing in Allergy Prevalence; Climate Change Suspected
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

Ragweed and Mold Lead Overall Upswing in Allergy Prevalence; Climate Change Suspected

Quest Diagnostics Health Trends analysis of nearly 14 million allergy tests ranks "30 Worst Big Cities for Ragweed"

MADISON, N.J., May 23, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Early results from the largest cross-sectional national allergy study ever conducted, to be released later this week, suggest that allergies have increased in America, but that most of the increase was due to two environmental allergens, ragweed and mold. The study, based on nearly 14 million test results from more than 2 million patient visits, is believed to be the largest to suggest that increased prevalence of the two allergens, which have been associated with climate change, are largely responsible for an increase in allergies in the United States.

To access the entire news release, go to: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/ragweed-and-mold-lead-overall-upswing-in-allergy-prevalence-climate-change-suspected-122457333.html

Is this a "Blog Post Worthy" story? 

2011-05-24 11:50:33
Daniel Bailey
Daniel Bailey
yooper49855@hotmail...
97.83.150.37

"Is this a "Blog Post Worthy" story? "

Very much so.  How tight is the attribution to CC?  Perhaps throw in some graphics of projected warm season duration increases, etc.

BTW, Quest is very well respected in the pharma biz.

2011-05-24 13:31:59Daniel Bailey
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

The answer to your question is contained in the following two paragraphs of the news release.

"We believe this is the first large national study to show that the growing prevalence of allergies, suggested by other studies, is largely due to increases in environment-based allergens previously associated with climate change," said Stanley J. Naides, M.D., medical director, immunology, Quest Diagnostics. "Given concerns about a warming climate, additional research is needed to confirm these findings and assess the possible implications for public health."

About 10% to 20% of Americans are sensitive to ragweed. Increased exposure to ragweed has been shown to increase an individual's risk of developing a ragweed allergy or of experiencing more severe allergy symptoms. Research has shown that a warming climate, by promoting longer blooming seasons, may increase both the abundance of certain environmental allergens, including ragweed, in the environment and length of the year during which people are exposed. A study published in March 2011 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences determined that the ragweed season was nearly a month longer in 2009 than it was in 1995 in certain northern areas of North America, possibly as a result of climate change.  Mold, as a precipitation-affected aeroallergen, may also increase in prevalence with a warmer climate.

Does anyone happen to know of similar studies in other than North America?