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Evaluation of the Indoor Air Quality of Beato Angelico Building of the University of Santo Tomas Crisencio M.

Paner * * College of Fine Arts and Design, University of Santo Tomas Abstract Out of 11 locations in Beato Angelico building sampled on by agar exposure method, 409 molds isolates were obtained from which Aspergillus was the most prevalent with 58% occurrence, Cladosporium, 32%, Curvularia, 9%, and the least was Neurospora, with only 1% occurrence. Interestingly, surfaceswabbing of airconditioners and water stained ceilings had also produced similar fungal genera as that of the agar-exposures, except for Neurospora which was absent in the surface swab results. After calibrating the mold counts in accordance with the standards for settling-plate and surface swab methods, results showed that 75% of the sampling stations for settling plate method and 100% of the sampling areas for surface swab method had mold count far beyond the threshold limit value of 100 cfu/90mm/4hr [17, 18, 34, 61]. Meanwhile, Chemical analysis had revealed the following results: a) the TVOC values of 4.2 ppm and 5.4 ppm respectively based on two stations were far beyond the TLV required by WHO, OSHA, and NIOSH [32], b)Total respiratory dust(TRD) values of 0.9 & 0.3 mg/m3 respectively based on two stations showed that these values were within the OSHSDOLE TLV of 5 mg/m3, & c) the results of CO2

measurements(< 1mg/m3 based on two stations) showed that these levels were within threshold limit value of 9,000 mg/m3 required by OSHS-DOLE(2005).

Key words: agar exposure method, threshold limit value, Indoor air quality, TVOC, TRD, CO2 Background of the Study According to Jackson et al. [35] on average most people spend 80% or more of their daily lives indoors whether at home, work, or in commercial buildings. The US Environmental Protection Agency [66] notes that indoor air is often two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. Over the last two decades, there has been increasing awareness regarding the potential impact of indoor air pollution on health. Indoor air quality (IAQ) is a term referring to the air quality within and around buildings and structures, especially as it relates to the health and comfort of building occupants [33]. Indoor air quality (IAQ) is one of many issues that building owners should address because better IAQ leads to more productive and happier occupants. In schools and institutional buildings IAQ are tied to learning outcomes and organizational missions. While it is hard to put firm numbers on these benefits, there is increasing evidence of measurable productivity increases and reduced absentee rates in spaces with better IAQ. Second, IAQ problems that get out of

hand can be quite costly in terms of lost work time, lost use of buildings, expensive building or mechanical system repairs, legal costs, and bad publicity. While extreme IAQ problems are rare, they do occur, and the consequences can be dramatic. Less severe problems are more common and can erode occupant productivity and lead to costs for smaller legal disputes or repairs. [9] Experts generally agree that healthy indoor school environments are a necessity if a high standard of education is to be expected. Recent studies have shown that schools have significant indoor environmental problems. High indoor air pollutant concentration may have a significant adverse impact on the health and academic performance of students. [38] Epidemiological investigations have shown that the `sickbuildin g syndrome(SBS) and hypersensitivity diseases (for example, asthma) are often associated with exposure to large concentrations of airborne microbes. [2, 22, 31] A study of teachers working in a moisture- and mold-damaged school building showed, that levels of these inflammatory markers in nasal lavage fluid were higher compared to control group.[29] In related studies, 80 fungal genera have been associated with symptoms of respiratory tract allergies, these include Cladosporium, Alternaria, Aspergillus and Fusarium, Penicillium, Ulocladium, Sistotrema, Alternaria, Eurotium, Wallemiu. [25, 30]

Hourly variations of four orders of magnitude of mold aerosols have been found in a classroom. [47] Total Volatile Organic Compounds(TVOCs) are one of the most commonly measured pollutants in schools. VOCs are suspected as one of the causes of SBS [44, 70]. Measured values of TVOC can vary significantly depending upon the sampling and analysis methods used. Particularly high TVOC concentrations, above 1 to 2 mg/m3, indicate the presence of strong VOC sources and/or low ventilation. Results of studies by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other researchers have found that VOCs are common in the indoor environment and that their levels may be ten to thousands times higher indoors than outdoors. In addition, there may be anywhere from 50 up to hundreds of individual VOCs in any one indoor air sample. At very low levels, some VOCs may produce odors that some people may consider to be objectionable, while others are irritants that can cause people to have headaches and eye, nose and throat irritation, and dizziness. At high concentrations, some VOCs are toxic or may be carcinogenic. Whether or not someone will become sick or notice an odor is highly variable. Complaints should be taken seriously, however, and investigated. Primary VOCs found are associated with solvents, paints and coating, adhesives, cleaners, furnishings, and personal care products. In schools, VOCs are associated with cleaning supplies, pesticides, building materials and furnishings, office equipment such as copiers and printers, correction fluids and carbonless copy paper, graphics and craft materials including glues, adhesives and turpentine for painting students,

permanent markers, whiteboard markers, and photographic solutions. Most standards and guidelines consider 200 g/m3 to 500 g/m3 TVOC as an acceptable level in buildings. Levels higher than this may result in irritation to some occupants. However, lower levels can also be an issue if a particularly toxic substance or odorant is present. The World Health Organization recommends that indoor exposures not exceed 0.1 ppm, and that actions be taken to reduce levels once they read 0.05 ppm. Although the legal limit covered by OSHA is 0.75 ppm, NIOSH recommends workers not be exposed to more than 0.016 ppm averaged over a 10-hour day. [32] Some chemical constituents of floor cleaning materials have been recognized as a possible cause of asthma in indoor environments i.e. colophony based products such as pine oil and tall oil, and benzalkonium chloride [39]. Building materials are important emission sources of VOCs, especially in new buildings [69]. Dust means solid particles being blown about or suspended in the air generated by handling, crushing, cutting, drilling, rapid impact, spraying, detonations, or disintegrations of inorganic or organic materials and are of a composition similar to the substance or substances from which they are derived. Total Respirable Dust (TRD) is measured gravimetrically. Dust can contain particles of a wide range of sizes. The effect of these particles when ingested into the body depends on the size, shape and chemical nature of the particles. Several studies have

demonstrated that particles in ambient air have adverse effects on respiratory health. [14, 19, 52 53, 56, 57, 64] Carbon dioxide is a normal constituent of exhaled breath and is commonly measured as a screening tool to evaluate whether adequate volumes of fresh outdoor are being introduced into indoor air. The carbon dioxide level is usually greater inside a building than outside, even in buildings with few complaints about indoor air quality. ASHRAE recommends that the indoor CO2 concentration be no greater than 700 ppm above the outdoor concentration for comfort (odor) reasons [6]. Air Velocity or Ventilation rates have rarely been measured in schools, although inadequate ventilation is often suspected to be an important condition leading to reported health symptoms. ASHRAE Standard 62-1999 [8] recommends a minimum ventilation rate of 8 L/s-person (15 cfm/person) for classrooms. Given typical occupant density of 33 per 90m2 (1000 ft2) and a ceiling height of 3m (10 ft), the current ASHRAE standard would require an air exchange rate of about 3 air changes per hour (ACH) for a classroom. Humans have difficulties perceiving changes of the relative humidity (RH), due to lack of sensory receptors for humidity [49]. In contrast, specific sensors exist for the perception of the temperature. However, reporting of dry air has been associated with poor indoor air quality (IAQ) or a sub-standard indoor environment since the 1980's [16]. Temperature and RH measurements are often collected as part of an IEQ investigation because these parameters affect the perception of comfort in an indoor environment. The perception of thermal comfort is

related to one's metabolic heat production, the transfer of heat to the environment, physiological adjustments, and body temperature [50]. Heat transfer from the body to the environment is influenced by factors such as temperature, humidity, air movement, personal activities, and clothing. Moisture is one of the most common causes of IAQ problems in buildings and has been responsible for some of the most costly IAQ litigation and remediation. Moisture enables growth of microorganisms, production of microbial VOCs and allergens, deterioration of materials, and other processes detrimental to IAQ. In addition, dampness has been shown to be strongly associated with adverse health outcomes. Control of moisture is thus critical to good IAQ. High indoor humidity can lead to dampness and low indoor humidity (less than 30% RH) can cause mucus membrane irritation, dry eyes, and sinus discomfort. Maintaining indoor humidity between 30-50% will control mold growth and alleviate the symptoms associated with low humidity. Negative building pressure can draw moist outdoor air into the building envelope, potentially leading to condensation. It can also draw moist air into the conditioned space itself, potentially increasing the latent load beyond the cooling system design capacity and leading to elevated indoor humidity. Positive building pressure can push moist indoor air into the building enclosure, potentially leading to condensation under heating conditions [15]. ASHRAE recommends that relative humidity in indoor environments be maintained between 30% and 50% relative humidity [6] and that the indoor temperature range provide for occupant comfort (69.0oF to 76.5oF in the winter and 75.5oF to 81.0oF in the summer at 40% relative humidity [7]. Studies

indicate that RH about 40% is better for the eyes and upper airways than levels below 30%. The optimal RH may differ for the eyes and the airways regarding desiccation of the mucous membranes [71]. There has been a long-standing historical use of settle plates, and that European regulatory agencies have supported their use. However, current active air sampling technology can be more advantageous and effective in assessing airborne viable contamination in clean rooms than settle plate monitoring. The use of settle plate monitoring may still be an optional test method for those applications where other more efficient sampling methods may not be possible or may have limited applicability [5]. Agar exposure method also known as the Settle plate method relies on the principle that the molds carrying particles are allowed to settle onto the medium for a given period of time and incubated at the required temperature. Malt extract agar is the appropriate medium used to culture molds. The normal sampling time is between 10 to 60 minutes. Though the method has the advantage of simplicity, it has certain limits. In this method only the rate of deposition of large particles from the air, not the total number of molds carrying particles per volume, is measured [62]. Settle plate methods are insensitive unless a long exposure period is adopted in order to detect the low number of airborne microorganisms. If this is not carried out the results are biased to give favorable data. If this is not practicable then plates should be monitored for successive work sessions and the incidence of contamination analyzed. The average size of microbial particle will deposit, by gravity, onto surfaces at a rate of approximately 1 cm/s. Petri dishes which are 90 mm in diameter (approximate internal area 64 cm2) are most

commonly used. For settle-plate method, the standard values are 50 cfu/90mm/4hours for ordinary indoor air at rest, and 100 cfu/90mm/4hours for indoor air operational. Clean room at rest is 5 cfu/90 mm/4 hours, while clean room operational is 50 cfu/90mm/4 hours. For swab and contact plate methods, the standards are 25 cfu/25cm2(for air at rest) and 50 cfu/25cm2(for air at operational). Clean support standard values on the other hand are 5 cfu/25cm2(at rest) and 25 cfu/25cm2(operational) [17, 18, 34, 61]. The Beato Angelico Building (Fig. 5), built in 1991, is an eightstorey structure that houses the College of Architecture, the College of Fine Arts and Design, and an art gallery for the exhibits of students, faculty members, and alumni artists. Since 2001, a portion of the ground floor has also served as the offices and technical facilities of the UST Publishing House. The building was designed by Architect Yolanda D. Reyes, a former dean of the College of Architecture. Beato Angelico building is located at the corner of Espaa and P.Noval Streets, Manila [12]. The building accommodates around six thousand students and faculties from both the College of Fine Arts and Design and the College of Architecture. There is a scarcity of studies in the Philippines regarding Indoor air quality of schools encompassing both the chemical and microbiological aspects. In particular there are no figures available on the prevalence in the Philippines of fungal contamination in indoor environments. It was the first time that this study was conducted on the indoor air of a building within the campus of the University of Santo Tomas (UST). The study had the following objectives:

1. To find the typical concentration levels of fungal bioaerosol in selected indoor environment of Beato Angelico Building. 2. To determine the level of concentrations of selected key indicators of air pollution such as Total volatile organic compounds (TVOCs), Total respirable dust(TRD), and Carbon dioxide (CO2) .

Materials and Methods I. Walk-through Inspection The building were surveyed and observed for signs of building damage and microbial contaminations such as water stains. II. Determination of Fungal Contaminations A. Agar Exposure Method Five agar plates were exposed for one hour in each floor (near the stairs) of the building as well as in the three rooms identified: Faculty room, Rooms 101 and 102 of the 8th Floor. The plates were placed on a table with a height of at least 1.5 meter above the ground. Malt-extract agar (half-strength) plates with pH maintained at 3.5 to specifically select for the molds were prepared.

At the end of each exposure period, the plates were placed in an incubator with temperature maintained at room temperature for 3-5 days. For identification of molds, each fungal isolate were cultured on MEA agar blocks on glass slides based on Henricis culture technique. Subsequent sporulating growth were examined with both stereoscopic and bright field microscopes. Fungal genera were identified using literatures on Fungal Taxonomy and Mycology. During the agar exposure, other parameters of the indoor air were also measured such as temperature and relative humidity. The number of occupants at the time of exposure were also counted. B. Surface Sampling by Swab Method Sterilized cotton buds moistened with normal saline solution were swabbed gently on different surfaces (with an area 25 of cm2 each) suspected with microbial contaminants like water stain marks on the ceilings and walls, and including louvers of the airconditioners. The swabs were then streaked directly onto plates of half-strength Malt Extract Agar (with pH 3.5 to inhibit bacteria). Prepared culture plates were incubated at room temperature for 3-5 days. Molds genera were identified using the same procedures as in IIA. III. Determining the Levels of Indoor Air Chemical Pollutants In the absence of specific instruments to be used on this part of the study, the researcher commissioned the company First Analytical Services and Technical Cooperative (F.A.S.T.

LABORATORIES) to conduct the sampling and analysis. Due to budgetary constraints only few indicators of indoor air pollution were measured such as Carbon dioxide(CO2), Total volatile organic compounds (TVOCs), and Total respirable dusts (TRD). Aside from these other physical parameters of the indoor air were also measured such as air velocity, temperature, and humidity. For TRD and CO2, the Main Entrance/Exit and the area near the stairs in the 2nd floor were the areas sampled on. While for TVOC, Room 1(first floor) and room 1(eight floor) were the areas selected for sampling.

Results and Discussions I. Walk-through Inspection of the Building During the inspection of the building last March 2, 2010, which began at 2 Oclock in the afternoon and ended at around 5 Oclock in the afternoon, the following things had been observed: a) several water stains on the ceiling of the faculty room; b) intense smell of volatile organic chemicals at room 101(ground floor), and room 1 and 2 (eight floor). It was later found that this volatile chemical at room 101(ground floor) was due to the adhesives that the students of the Industrial Design had bee using, while at room 1 and 2 (eight floor), the volatile chemical was due to turpentine that the Painting students h ad been using as thinning agent for their painting pigments, c) Louvers of the aircon in all the rooms selected for sampling

were found to be full of dust, an indication that they have not been cleaned for a long time. Furthermore, from ground floor up to the eight floor near the stairways, it was also observed that air was very hot and humid. Many students were also observed coming in and out the building at that time. II. Determination of Fungal Contaminations A. Agar Exposure Method or Settle Plate Method As indicated in Table 1, there was a generally slight decreasing trend in the number of molds isolated from ground floor to the 8th floor of the building. This could be attributed to the number of people [55] who were present at the time of the sampling. It has been observed that majority of people were present at the ground floor more than in the other floors because of its function as entrance and exit. Next to ground floor, second floor were found to have also a greater number of students. It was because this floor housed the offices and faculty rooms of both the College of Fine Arts and Design and the College of Architecture. The decreased number of molds isolated from third floor to eight floor may also be attributed to the lesser number of students observed to be present during the time of sampling. For room 1(ground floor) and rooms 1 & 2 (eight floor), the number of molds isolated showed almost similarly small. Reason for this was because these rooms were airconditioned and even though

there were occupants (mean 35) inside, they performed lesser activity compared with those people in the ground floor. According to Flannigan [25] any activity in the building might disturb settled spores causing them to spread in the air. As for the temperature and relative humidity, Table 1 showed a generally high values from ground floor to the eight floor with an exception for room 1(ground floor) and rooms 1 and 2 of the eight floor which were airconditioned. Increased temperatures and humidities in the environment are conducive to the growth of molds, causing them to multiply faster and produce spores in great amounts. Half-strength of Malt-Extract Agar was used in the experiment in order to delay the growth of some fast growing molds. As shown in Table 1 & Figure 1, of the 409 molds that were isolated from 11 different locations, Aspergillus (Fig. 6b) was found to be the most prevalent with 58% occurrence, Cladosporium (Fig. 6c) with 32%, Curvularia (Fig.6a) with 9%, and the least was Neurospora (Fig. 6d), with only 1% occurrence. The results were not surprising because for example, Aspergillus niger, has been found growing on damp walls and ceilings [10]. Miller [42] stated that among the facultative pathogens of Interest, Aspergillus fumigatus, A terreus and sometimes A flavus cause aspergillosis, an invasive lung disease. On the other hand Cladosporium is a dematiaceous (pigmented) mold widely distributed in air and rotten organic material and frequently isolated as a contaminant on foods [23,

24]. The genus Cladosporium includes over 30 species and the most common ones include Cladosporium elatum, Cladosporium herbarum, Cladosporium sphaerospermum, and Cladosporium cladosporioides. Cladosporium spp. are causative agents of skin lesions, keratitis, onychomycosis, sinusitis and pulmonary infections [20, 59]. Furthermore, Miller [42] had also affirmed that most people diagnosed as allergic to mold are tested for allergy to Cladosporium cladosporiodes, Cladosporium herbarum and Alternara alternate. In another related study, it was found that hay fever has a significant correlation with indoor fungi, such as Cladosporium, Epicoccum, and Yeast [63]. Curvularia has three ubiquitous species which have been recovered from human infections, principally from cases of mycotic keratitis; C. lunata, C. pallescens and C. geniculata. Clinical manifestations of phaeohyphomycosis include sinusitis, endocarditis, peritonitis and disseminated infection [60]. Neurospora is a common bread mold and has not been normally implicated in any human disease. But its presence in the air can also possibly cause allergic rhinitis specially to a compromised individuals if inhaled. Figure 3 is the experiment set-up for agar exposure method. It shows a petri-dish placed on top of a stool with half-strength Malt-Extract Agar(pH 3.5) being exposed for one hour to air at the ground floor of the Beato Angelico building. Relative humidity and temperature of the indoor air were also taken in this site as well as in other 10 more sites. The area with the highest number of molds isolated were the water stains on the ceiling (Table 2 & Fig. 2) of the faculty room. While the rest of the sampling areas had similarly small numbers of

isolated molds. But the mere fact that molds were isolated from all the sampling areas was an indication that majority of airconditioners were not being cleaned or not being cleaned as regularly as it should. A higher number of molds isolated in the water-stained ceiling can be attributed more on the water that may have infiltrated the gypsum board ceiling and which made it a good breeding ground for a variety of molds. This is a rather dangerous situation on the part of the occupants of this room particularly those who stay there for quite sometime because if the contaminated tile ceiling is not replaced immediately, prolong periods would generate thousands of spores which when inhaled by a compromised person may cause him or her an allergic rhinitis or much worse a respiratory disease such as aspergillosis. Differences in the size and sedimentation rate of spores also affect what is detected in air samples. For instance, it has been found out that large Ulocladium spores released from mold patches on walls in damp houses sediment rapidly [25] so that, even where growth is profuse, the mold is likely to be detected in the air in quantity only shortly after disturbance of the growth or re-entrainment of settled spores as a result of activity. Out of 117 molds that were isolated through agar swab method from four sampling locations (consisting of 13 aircon louvers and three water stained gypsum ceiling boards), Aspergillus revealed the highest percent occurrence at 60.7%, Cladosporium was next with 31.6% occurrence, and the least was Curvularia,

with 7.7% occurrence(figure 5 & table 2). This result is almost similar as that of Agar exposure results in terms of the kind of fungal genera that were isolated. It was not impossible because this population of molds after being suspended in the air for a while would eventually fall on different surfaces due to earths gravitational pull. In order to calibrate the average number of molds in Table 1 with that of the standards, the values in the table had to be multiplied by 4. This was because in the standard, the exposure time was 4 hours while in the experiment conducted the exposure period was only 1 hour. It can be seen in Table 3 that in general the number of molds isolated from ground floor to eight floor were all beyond the threshold limit value of 100 cfu/90mm/4hr except for room 1(ground floor) and rooms 1 & 2 at the eight floor which were below the threshold limit values. Again these values above the threshold limit can be accounted for the presence of people at the sampling areas during the sampling time. The observed high temperature and high humidity were also possible reason for the high mold count since these could provide a conducive environment for the growth of molds [11]. The mold count may be reduced if only there were exhaust fans in the areas sampled on. Dampness can occur from existing leaks or new leaks from the windows, building faade, leaking pipes above the ceiling, or leaking unit ventilators from the floor above.

It is generally recognized that the growth of mold on interior surfaces in buildings is unacceptable and that the amount of growth (surface area) in a room is important in determining the procedures used in mold remediation [ 3, 45, 46, 51, 67 ]. According to Miller [42], fungal contamination of building air is almost always caused by poor design and/or maintenance. Molds are transported into the indoor environment through air circulation or are carried indoors by organisms, including human beings, or in the moving of inanimate objects that have molds attached to their surfaces. When the food source, moisture, temperature, and so forth in the indoor environment are favorable, molds can grow. Ghosh and Hines [27] said that fungi are introduced into an indoor environment, they can settle in amplification sites where they thrive and grow. Amplification sites include any site with the proper pH, temperature, and moisture content. In some moisture damaged buildings, mold growth is hidden on construction materials within wall cavities or building assemblies and thus not readily evident during inspection. Microbial volatile organic compounds reportedly can diffuse through building construction and may be useful in locating concealed mould growth [68]. P. chrysogenum was the dominant culturable mold (concentrations about 200 cfu/m3) found in air samples collected in leaky rooms. P. crustosum, P. commune, P. spinulosum, and P. aurantiogriseum were also present in leaky

rooms at concentrations at least an order of magnitude higher than those detected in the outdoor air [46] . According to a recent study of Bornehag et al. [13] early detection of water leakage was indicative of the extent of visible mold growth subsequently found on biodegradable construction materials hidden within exterior walls. The study also showed that spores from hidden mould growth in exterior walls can enter the indoor air in sufficient amounts to significantly degrade indoor air quality, e.g., by changing the rank order of taxa in room air. Molds may grow on the stagnant water left in the humidifier and then be aerosolized when the unit is reactivated [54]. Currently, it is suggested by the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygiene [1] that bioaerosol concentrations higher than 500 CFU/ m3 be considered as a sign of the presence of a building-related air pollution source. The fungal concentrations found at most of the indoor environments should fall within the specified guidelines of the American Conference of Government Industrial Hygienists, between 100 and 1000 CFU/m3 for the total fungi [2]. As presented in Table 4, the calibrated average number of molds based on surface swab method for all locations were above the standard TLV of 50 cfu/25 cm2. These results were proof that in a natural way, the molds in the air may later on find its way on different surfaces by gravity. However, high number of molds

found on the surfaces are also indicative of poor cleaning practices. The standards set by ACGIH [2] which is between 100-1000 CFU/m3 for the total fungi could not be applied in this study because the methods of sampling of indoor air were both different. In ACGIH standards, the method of sampling was based on an Andersen air sampler (impinger or impactor apparatus) while in this study, the indoor air was sampled through settling-plate method. Of course, the first one was much more accurate than the second one, however in the absence of the air sampling apparatus which is more expensive, Agar exposure method may still be used as an alternative. Its accuracy however may be just increased by using higher number of agar-exposure plates per sampling location, by increasing the time of exposure (at least up to 4 hours), by being careful not to contaminate the plates, and by using appropriate media for culturing the molds like malt-extract-agar, saborauds dextrose agar, etc III. Determining the Levels of Indoor Air Chemical Pollutants In the chemical analysis of the indoor air of Beato Angelico building, a private company (FAST Laboratories) was commissioned to the job, the methods of sampling and analysis were based on Occupational Safety and Health StandardsDepartment of Labor and Employment (OSHS-DOLE), 2005 and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

Table 5 shows the summary of different parameters that were measured as well the different sampling methods and analytical methods applied in this study. Total Volatile Organic Compounds(TVOCs) In this study the Total Volatile Organic Compounds (TVOCs) were collected using VX 500 Gas analyzer and measured using a PID RAE monitor. Presented in Table 6 were the levels of Total Volatile Organic Compounds in the two identified locations namely Room F101 and room F802. These two rooms were particularly selected because of the observed presence of VOC smell in these rooms. In room F101, it was observed that there was a smell of adhesives which the Industrial Design students were using. While in room F802, there was a recurring smell of turpentine in the room which the Painting students were using when they conduct oil painting sessions. Unfortunately, OSHS-DOLE had no existing Threshold Limit Value(TLV) for TVOCs, so the researcher conducted intensive research on the reference standards from the library and the World Wide Web. Lucky enough, the researcher had found what he was looking for. He had found actually not only one but 3 different reference standards, namely: WHO, OSHA, and NIOSH [32] . So, referring again to Table 6, the TVOC values of 4.2 ppm (for room F101) and 5.4 ppm (for room F802) were very far higher compared with the 0.1 ppm TLV set by World Health

Organization [32]. In this case TVOC value in F101 was 42 times higher than WHO TLV, while in room F802 the TVOC value was 54 times higher compared with WHO Threshold limit values for VOCs. Comparing still the measured TVOC values with OSHA [32] standard of 0.75 ppm, it was obvious that the measured values for the two rooms were very much higher compared with the OSHA TLV. NIOSH [32] has even stricter standard when it recommends workers not be exposed to more than 0.016 ppm averaged over a 10-hour day. If this would be applied to the two rooms mentioned then the students in these rooms, assuming they stay in that rooms for 10 hours, then they are exposed to 300 times more than the threshold limit value. This reminded me when one time, Prof. Noel Escultura (Pers. Comm., March 7, 2010) admitted that he knew his Painting class were getting high already on turpentine(VOC) when suddenly they began making noises and there was also a sudden change in his students behavior. But actually, this problem may be easily remedied by putting exhaust fans in the room. These fans can siphon out these volatile organic compounds that are present in the room. Requiring students to wear gas mask is also one solution although, some may complain of uneasy feeling in using the mask. Total Respirable Dust(TRD) The Threshold Limit Value(TLV) for Total respirable Dust(TRD) set by OSHS-DOLE(2005) was 5 mg/m3. In this

study TRD was collected through filtration method and analysis was done gravimetrically. Presented in Table 7 is the dust concentrations (TRD) measured at Main Entrance/Exit and 2nd floor of Beato Angelico building. Comparing the two values with the OSHS-DOLE TLV of 5 mg/m3 would show that they are within the threshold limit value. However, if we would apply the standard of Molhave [43] and Helmis et al. [28], the two values are much higher compared with threshold limit value of 50 microgram/m3 even if these two values are adjusted with that of the standard. Differences in standards are expected because one could decide to increase his standard in order to achieve higher quality indoor air while the other one could not increase yet the standard because of some considerations like inability of majority of companies to follow yet a higher standard in terms of indoor air quality. Financial factor is also one reason because it also requires big amount of money to achieve or maintain a higher quality of indoor air. Particulate air pollution is a complex mixture of solid particles and liquid droplets of different size, composition and origin. Particles with a diameter less than 10 micron are of special interest since they are inhalable. These particles are often referred to us PM10 [52]. According to Molhave [43] and Helmis et al. [28], the minimum acceptable concentration PM10 in the indoor environment should be 50 microgram (g)/m3 at 24 continuous hour exposure.

RH has an effect on the formation and size of secondary aerosols and therefore on the deposition. Low RH appears to enhance particle deposition of fine particles [36] and high RH likewise [26, 41]. Carbon Dioxide (CO2) The threshold limit value for CO2 level based on the OSHSDOLE(2005) is 9,000 mg/m3. In this study CO2 was collected using gas sampling bag then analyzed through direct measurement. As shown in Table 8, the results of CO2 measurements were within Threshold Limit Value of 9,000 mg/m3 required by OSHS-DOLE(2005). These findings show an adequacy of ventilations for the areas measured. Elevated CO2 concentrations suggest that other indoor contaminants may also be increased. Carbon dioxide is a simple asphyxiant, and can also act as a respiratory irritant [37]. But exposure to an extremely high CO2 concentration (above 30,000ppm) is required before significant health problems are likely. Exposures above 30,000 ppm can lead to headaches, dizziness, and nausea [65]. Yang et al. [72] found that these concentrations also affect perception of motion. This may be because CO2 has been shown to moderate the activity of cells within the visual cortex. Few studies are available about the ventilation levels and the CO2 concentration in schools. Most studies conclude that

schools do not meet the ventilation levels foreseen by the ASHRAE standard 62-1999, while the indoor CO2 concentration usually exceeds the threshold of 1000 ppm [21, 40]. Myhrvold, et al. [48] studied 22 classrooms in 5 Norwegian schools renovated with the objective of improving indoor air quality. Pre- and post-renovation measurements were made, including health symptom questionnaires and performance tests administered to 550 students, and measurements of CO2 concentrations. These investigators found a statistically significant partial correlation (one way ANOVA, p< 0.001) between symptoms of headaches, dizziness, heavy headed, tiredness, difficulties concentrating, unpleasant odor, and high CO2 concentrations (1500-4000 ppm compared to concentrations below 1500 ppm). Health symptoms characterized as "irritations of the upper airways" were also higher at higher CO2 concentrations (p=0.024). Reduced performance on the Swedish Performance Evaluation System test was also observed at higher concentrations of CO2. On the other hand, an epidemiological study in 3 complaint and 4 non-complaint Dutch schools (14 classrooms total) assessed relationships between SBS symptom complaints of children and CO2 levels and indoor climate [58]. The complaint of bad odor of the air was associated with high CO2 levels. Air Velocity or Ventilation Rates Ventilation rate was measured using thermo-anemometer. Air movements were taken near the supply of air and students

position. While monitoring was being conducted, the general weather condition was taken into consideration and applicable standards were used. In the sampling conducted, the general weather condition was sunny. Results presented in Table 9 demonstrate air velocity (of fan) values for room F101 and room F802 were generally higher than the 150 ft./min (summer) standards of OSHS-DOLE(2005) . These higher values are interestingly indicative of a higher ventilation rates in the two rooms sampled on. But it was also ironic because it was in these two rooms where TVOCs were very high. Well, even if the electric fans are put on but if there are no exit points or no exhaust fans that would remove the VOCs, then these VOCs will still remain inside the room. It would just circulate inside the room and not come out because there is no exit point . Conclusion and Recommendations Microbiological analysis of the indoor air of Beato Angelico building revealed the existence of high level of molds in the air which were beyond the standards. This implies therefore, the need to conduct a more thorough clean-up process of the affected areas. As for the chemical analysis of the selected areas, it was found out that a greater concern was on the Total volatile organic compounds(TVOCs) values of the three rooms F101, F801 and F802 which were far beyond the threshold limit values set by the three respected institutions namely, World Health Organization(WHO), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) [32]. But this problem can be remedied by simply

putting up powerful exhaust fans in the concerned rooms. In this way, for example, the turpentine released in the air will be siphoned out and is not going to stay inside the room. But to make sure that all the remedial measures are being applied effectively, it would be better if there will be a regular monitoring of the indoor air. Acknowledgments The researcher would like to thank the University of Santo Tomas for extending financial support in order to make this research a success. Special mentioned is given also to the following persons for their guidance and unwavering support: Dr. Clarita M. de Leon Carillo, Director of UST Academic Affairs & Research, Dr. Christina A. Binag, Director Research Center for the Natural Sciences, and Dr. Cynthia B. Loza, Dean UST-College of Fine Arts and Design.

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Acknowledgement: The author would like to thank the University of Santo Tomas administrations for providing the funds needed for the above research. About the Author: Prof. Crisencio Paner has been teaching at the College of Fine Arts and Design,University of Santo Tomas Manila for more than 18 years now. He has also been restoring paintings and other artworks since 2000. His portfolio can be found in his blog, http://cmpaner.blogspot.com (The Painting Doctor-Restorer/Conservator). He can be contacted at mobile nos. 09999401794 or at Tel. 02 416-2489)