Is fighting the dustmite a waste of time?

Dr Matt Colloff's book, Dust Mites , is an exposé of the lives of house dust mites, the problems they cause, how they cause them and what measures can be taken to control their numbers and includes information on their identification, physiology and ecology, allergen biochemistry and molecular biology, epidemiology, mite control and allergen avoidance.

Dr Colloff has been studying dust mites for 25 years especially in relation to allergic diseases, their global distribution and how to control them.

Dust mites have been found everywhere from the Antarctic to the Mir Space Station and their recorded history goes back to the 17th century; a 1657 woodcut by August Hauptmann appears on the cover of Dr Colloff's book.

Mites are only 0.25mm to 0.50mm long. They feed on organic 'dust' such as flakes of shed human skin and love human houses where they can be found in our beds, clothing, curtains and carpets. The allergens they produce are found in their bodies, secretions, faecal matter and shed skins. Some of their gut enzymes can be strongly allergenic and these often persist in their faecal matter.Dr Colloff believes that there needs to be at least a 90% reduction in allergen levels to significantly improve the health of those who have dust mite allergy.

This is the first time much of the data on dustmites has been pulled together and analysed.

More at

First Published in 2008

Back to top