Ireland’s Dirtiest Pillow

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Gabriel Scientific, in conjunction with airmid healthgroup, launched The Pillow Check Up 2013 on RTE Radio 1’s The Mooney Show on the 17th of April. Listeners were invited to send their pillows for analysis at airmid healthgroups laboratories to measure the levels of mould, allergens and bacteria present in pillows around Ireland. The results revealed that one third of pillows sampled had evidence of dust mite allergen. All of the pillows were found to harbour bacteria, just under a third of which at high levels, while half contained detectable levels of mould. A variety of mould and bacterial species were identified including Candida, Aspergillus, Rhodoltorula, and Streptococcus.

In return for submitting their pillows, some of which were up to 70 years old, listeners were sent a new SleepAngel™ pillow. The SleepAngel™ pillow was designed by Gabriel Scientific and won the overall “Innovation of the Year” Award at the 2012 Irish Times InterTradeIreland Innovation Awards. A unique and innovative feature of the waterproof pillow is a patented filter that not only blocks the entry of microorganisms, but also allows airflow in and out of the product. airmid healthgroup tested the SleepAngel™ Pillow for its ability to act as an effective barrier to allergen, bacteria, fungi and viruses. The microorganisms used for the testing were chosen based on their ability to act as pathogens and/or cause allergic sensitisation. The data generated showed the product to be a 100% effective barrier.

On the 3rd of May, airmid healthgroup CEO Dr Bruce Mitchell appeared on The Mooney Show on RTE Radio 1, along with Gabriel Scientific founder David Woolfson, to reveal “Ireland’s Dirtiest Pillow”. The winner was a 34 year old pillow, shown in the picture, containing high levels of both Der p 1 (House dust mite allergen) and bacteria including S. aureus, S. epidermidis, E. coli and Bacillus species.

To listen in – click these links
Derek Mooney Show 17th April
Derek Mooney Show 18th April

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Contact Graeme Tarbox if you have any questions on the issues raised in this article and how we can add value to your company:

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About airmid healthgroup
airmid helps clients with products and services related to residential and commercial indoor environments to differentiate their customer offerings through health relevant marketing claims. Clients include Dyson, LG, Stanley Steemer, Shaw Industries, Tarkett, Spring Air and Kenmore. airmid creates value for clients through a number of collaborative strategies, including field research projects, environmental test chamber studies and licensing our own intellectual property. airmid specializes in studying the relationship between allergens, viruses, bacteria, molds or other ultra-fine particles in the air and on surfaces to the spread of illness and disease in buildings. As a leading authority on biomedical and aerobiology research, they use this deep domain knowledge to improve products and services to make the indoor environment as healthy as possible. For more information, visit

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