A Volumetric Survey of Aeroallergens in San Antonio, Texas From 2012-2017: Not All Allergens Fit The Mold

Priya Nath, MD1 , Robert Anthony Gomez, MT (ASCP), MBcm2 , Priscilla H. Wong, MD3 , Howard C. Crisp, II, MD FAAAAI4 , and Karla E. Adams, MD5

Author address: 

1 Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium, San Antonio, TX, 2 JBSA Lackland AFB, DOD Air Force, Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center, San Antonio, TX, 3 Luke Air Force Base Allergy/Immunology, Luke AFB, AZ, 4 North Texas Allergy And Asthma Associates, Dallas, TX, 5 US Air Force, JBSA Lackland AFB, TX


RATIONALE: An aeroallergen survey of Texas trees, weeds and grasses does not exist. This is the first survey of the unique pollinating patterns in San Antonio, TX developed to tailor testing and immunotherapy.

METHODS: Pollen grains were collected using the Burkard collector from 2012 to 2017. The samples were manually counted by a National Allergy Bureau certified technician utilizing Calberla’s solution and light microscopy. The data was analyzed using descriptive statistics to identify annual seasonal variation, pollen count in relation to temperature and precipitation and length of pollen seasons using 5%/95% criteria.

RESULTS: Analyzing pollen production revealed that trees make up roughly 86% of the total pollen production whereas weeds and grasses make up the remainder 11% and 3%, respectively. The most prevalent pollinating season for trees was spring. However, Celtis occidentalis was noted to pollinate throughout the summer. Predictably, Juniperus ashei pollinated in the winter in all years, but was found to have a triphasic pattern from year to year. The most heavily pollinating trees were Quercus spp. and Juniperus ashei, accounting for nearly 70% of all tree pollination grains. Ambrosia artemisiifolia and Urtica dioica were prevalent pollinators and resulted in an annual biphasic pollinating pattern. Grasses, previously thought to pollinate in the summer only, were found to be heavy pollinators throughout any year.

CONCLUSIONS: This survey reports the most prevalent pollens and patterns for San Antonio. We demonstrate that periodic aeroallergen sampling and review can reveal pollinating patterns previously unknown. This knowledge of location specific aeroallergen patterns is vital for precision care.


abstract No: 


Full conference title: 

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology 2019
    • AAAAI 2019