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Subject: Sphagnum moss

Sphagnum moss

From: Phil Geis <geis.pa<-a>
Date: Monday, April 7, 2008
I was surprised to read that some were considering the use of
sphagnum moss for conservation.  Indeed there may be some effect of
the material to limit growth of some fungi and bacteria but it is
not sterile and will supply its own microbial contaminants, a common
fungus encountered is Sporotrix schenkii-the etiologic agent of
sporotrichosis.

So folks attempting to use sphagnum moss should make sure the stuff
has been sterilized.  I'd also be concerned about staining.

    K. E. Powell, A. Taylor, B. J. Phillips, D. L. Blakey, G. D.
    Campbell, L. Kaufman and W. Kaplan
    Cutaneous sporotrichosis in forestry workers. Epidemic due to
    contaminated Sphagnum moss. JAMA. Vol. 240 No. 3, July 21, 1978

The above-cited article is one of many that reported a specific
infection associated with exposure to sphagnum moss--sporotrichosis,
the fungal agent being Sprothrix schenkii.  It's usually a cutaneous
infection but may disseminate and also may cause pulmonary infection.


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                  Conservation DistList Instance 21:54
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Received on Monday, 7 April, 2008

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