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Pollen and respirable dust – mutual allergy triggers?

Pollen and respirable dust – mutual allergy triggers? (http://www.pollen-feinstaub.org/) is a sparkling science project (http://www.sparklingscience.at) in collaboration with the Karl-Franzens-University of Graz, the BRG Kepler, the Ecole Güssing, the RDBU Graz (http://botanik.uni-graz.at/de/forschung/fachdidaktik/regionales-fachdidaktikzentrum-biologie-und-umweltkunde-steiermark/) and the AECC in Vienna.

Project Description

There was a sharp increase in allergic diseases in recent decades. The range of the health problems caused by allergies ranging from hay fever and mucosal irritation (rhinitis, Conjunctivities) about atopic dermatitis allergic asthma and anaphylactic shock. Aero-allergens such as different tree and grass pollen, mold spores, dust mites and allergens of animal hair have been identified as the main culprit in allergic diseases. Moreover, even food allergies have increased lately. A causal relationship between pollen and food allergies was detected in some cases through the cross reaction of the allergy triggering proteins involved. The relationship between allergies and environmental pollution is less studied. There are some works which indicate that an increased awareness of allergies is caused by an increased impact on the environment and on the other hand, certain allergy sources through an increased pollution in the form of a more aggressive/reactivate to occur.

Both pollution as even allergies topics are central in the classroom, especially the secondary, can be positioned, the strong secular life covers contain for the pupils and cause potentially great interest. The present project is aimed to investigate the relationship between common allergy-causing substances and environmental pollution sources commonly used in our latitudes together with the involved pupils. Students and teachers are involved from the beginning actively with their interests in the planning and implementation of the project. The didactic project monitoring aims to ensure a meeting and communication of all stakeholders (students, teachers and researchers) on an equal footing.

Participating schools

  • BRG Kepler, Graz, ST
  • HBLFS für wirtschaftliche Berufe - ECOLE Güssing, B

Scientific partners

  • Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Institut für Chemie
  • Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Institut für Pflanzenwissenschaften
  • Universität Wien, Österreichisches Kompetenzzentrum für Didaktik der Biologie


September 2012 - December 2014

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