Pollen counts and their relationship to meteorological factors in Ankara, Turkey during 2005-2008

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Kızılpınar I., Civelek E. , Tuncer A., Doğan C. , Karabulut E. , Şahiner Ü. M. , ...More

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF BIOMETEOROLOGY, vol.55, pp.623-631, 2011 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 55
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s00484-010-0363-8
  • Page Numbers: pp.623-631


Pollen plays an important role in the development and exacerbation of allergic diseases. We aimed to investigate the days with highest counts of the most allergenic pollens and to identify the meteorological factors affecting pollen counts in the atmosphere of Ankara, Turkey. Airborne pollen measurements were carried out from 2005 to 2008 with a Burkard volumetric 7-day spore trap. Microscope counts were converted into atmospheric concentrations and expressed as pollen grains/m(3). Meteorological parameters were obtained from the State Meteorological Service. All statistical analyses were done with pollen counts obtained from March to October for each year. The percentages of tree, grass and weed pollens were 72.1% (n = 24,923), 12.8% (n = 4,433) and 15.1% (n = 5,219), respectively. The Pinaceae family from tree taxa (39% to 57%) and the Chenopodiaceae/Amaranthaceae family from weed taxa, contributed the highest percentage of pollen (25% to 43%), while from the grass taxa, only the Poaceae family was detected from 2005 to 2008. Poaceae and Chenopodiaceae/Amaranthaceae families, which are the most allergenic pollens, were found in high numbers from May to August in Ankara. In multiple logistic regression analysis, wind speed (OR = 1.18, CI95% = 1.02-1.36, P = 0.023) for tree pollen, daily mean temperature (OR = 1.10, CI95% = 1.04-1.17, P = 0.001) and sunshine hours (OR = 1.15, CI95% = 1.01-1.30, P = 0.033) for grass pollen, and sunshine hours (OR = 3.79, CI95% = 1.03-13.92, P = 0.044) for weed pollen were found as significant risk factors for high pollen count. The pollen calendar and its association with meteorological factors depend mainly on daily temperature, sunshine hours and wind speed, which may help draw the attention of physicians and allergic patients to days with high pollen counts.