Naava Green Walls Scientifically Found to Promote Microbiological Diversity and Health Among Office Workers

A 2022 study by Soininen et al. and the ADELE research group has discovered that air-circulating Naava green walls alter the microbiome and modulate the immune system among office workers, having a potential in promoting microbiological diversity and human health in built environments. 

The ADELE (Autoimmune Defence and Living Environment) research group consisting of researchers from the universities of Helsinki and Tampere as well as the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke) studies our modern living and working environments to discover solutions for preventing the development of immune-mediated diseases such as allergies, asthma, and type 1 diabetes.


Background of the Study

It has been estimated that by 2050, two thirds of the world's population will be living in urban cities. Even though living in cities has its perks in terms of work, transport, public health and other services, urban environments also present unique challenges for us humans. One of these challenges concerns the reduced microbiological abundance and diversity which have frequently been associated with immune-mediated diseases such as atopy and allergies. This means, in short, that being in daily contact with nature is crucial for our health.


About Naava

Naava is a unique innovation developed in Jyväskylä, Finland. Using NASA-based technology, Naava green walls actively circulate indoor air through the plants’ roots, allowing the plants’ microbes to biologically break down pollutants from the air. Naava is the world’s most researched green wall, and the system's air purification ability has been proven in several studies. This study adds to the evidence of other studies suggesting the positive impact of increasing our connection with nature to improve health and well-being.


Research Design and Results

The study focused on evaluating the impact of air-circulating Naava green walls on this bacterial abundance and diversity on human skin and on immune responses determined by blood cytokine measurements. The study featured human subjects working in office environments who were exposed to the green walls in addition to a control group that continued to work without the presence of said green walls. 

After 28 days of being exposed to the Naava green walls, both the relative abundance of genus Lactobacillus and diversity of phylum Proteobacteria and class Gammaproteobacteria increased among the individuals who were working in spaces with Naava green walls. Lactobacillus, Proteobacteria, and Gammaproteobacteria have been found to be advantageous for skin health, indicating that spending time in spaces with green walls has a positive effect on health-supporting skin microbiota as well as the immune system. 


Researchers and Contact Information

The study was conducted as part of the Business Finland funded ADELE 2 (Immune Defence and Living Environment) project between Luke, the University of Helsinki, and the University of Tampere. The research group of Heikki Hyöty, Professor of Virology, participated in the study from the University of Tampere, and the study is part of the doctoral thesis of Laura Soininen, Master of Science in Ecology (University of Helsinki).


More information about the research:

Marja Roslund, Postdoctoral Researcher, , +358 29 5322 256

Laura Soininen, Doctoral Researcher,

Aki Sinkkonen, Principal Investigator, , +358 29 5322 306


More information about Naava:

Siru Heiskanen, Head of Marketing,, +358 50 4702 160

Niko Järvinen, CTO,, +358 40 5339 758

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