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      Biomarkers for monitoring clinical efficacy of allergen immunotherapy for allergic rhinoconjunctivitis and allergic asthma: an EAACI Position Paper

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          Abstract

          Allergen immunotherapy (AIT) is an effective treatment for allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (AR) with or without asthma. It is important to note that due to the complex interaction between patient, allergy triggers, symptomatology and vaccines used for AIT, some patients do not respond optimally to the treatment. Furthermore, there are no validated or generally accepted candidate biomarkers that are predictive of the clinical response to AIT. Clinical management of patients receiving AIT and efficacy in randomised controlled trials for drug development could be enhanced by predictive biomarkers.

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          Most cited references 173

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          Long-term clinical efficacy of grass-pollen immunotherapy.

          Pollen immunotherapy is effective in selected patients with IgE-mediated seasonal allergic rhinitis, although it is questionable whether there is long-term benefit after the discontinuation of treatment. We conducted a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of the discontinuation of immunotherapy for grass-pollen allergy in patients in whom three to four years of this treatment had previously been shown to be effective. During the three years of this trial, primary outcome measures were scores for seasonal symptoms and the use of rescue medication. Objective measures included the immediate conjunctival response and the immediate and late skin responses to allergen challenge. Cutaneous-biopsy specimens obtained 24 hours after intradermal allergen challenge were examined for T-cell infiltration and the presence of cytokine-producing T helper cells (TH2 cells) (as evidenced by the presence of interleukin-4 messenger RNA). A matched group of patients with hay fever who had not received immunotherapy was followed as a control for the natural course of the disease. Scores for seasonal symptoms and the use of rescue antiallergic medication, which included short courses of prednisolone, remained low after the discontinuation of immunotherapy, and there was no significant difference between patients who continued immunotherapy and those who discontinued it. Symptom scores in both treatment groups (median areas under the curve in 1995, 921 for continuation of immunotherapy and 504 for discontinuation of immunotherapy; P=0.60) were markedly lower than those in the group that had not received immunotherapy (median value in 1995, 2863). Although there was a tendency for immediate sensitivity to allergen to return late after discontinuation, there was a sustained reduction in the late skin response and associated CD3+ T-cell infiltration and interleukin-4 messenger RNA expression. Immunotherapy for grass-pollen allergy for three to four years induces prolonged clinical remission accompanied by a persistent alteration in immunologic reactivity.
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            Allergen immunotherapy: a practice parameter third update.

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              IL-10 and TGF-beta cooperate in the regulatory T cell response to mucosal allergens in normal immunity and specific immunotherapy.

              The regulation of normal and allergic immune responses to airborne allergens in the mucosa is still poorly understood, and the mechanism of specific immunotherapy (SIT) in normalizing the allergic response to such allergens is currently not clear. Accordingly, we have investigated the immunoregulatory mechanism of both normal and allergic responses to the major house-dust mite (HDM) and birch pollen allergens--Dermatophagoides pteroynyssinus (Der p)1 and Bet v 1, respectively--as well as the immunologic basis of SIT to HDM in rhinitis and asthma patients. In normal immunity to HDM and birch pollen, an allergen-specific peripheral T cell suppression to Der p 1 and Bet v 1 was observed. The deviated immune response was characterized by suppressed proliferative T cell and Th1 (IFN-gamma) and Th2 (IL-5, IL-13) cytokine responses, and increased IL-10 and TGF-beta secretion by allergen-specific T cells. Neutralization of cytokine activity showed that T cell suppression was induced by IL-10 and TGF-beta during SIT and in normal immunity to the mucosal allergens. In addition, SIT induced an antigen-specific suppressive activity in CD4(+) CD25(+) T cells of allergic individuals. Together, these results demonstrate a deviation towards a regulatory/suppressor T cell response during SIT and in normal immunity as a key event for the healthy immune response to mucosal antigens.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Allergy
                Allergy
                Wiley-Blackwell
                01054538
                August 2017
                August 06 2017
                : 72
                : 8
                : 1156-1173
                Article
                10.1111/all.13138
                28152201
                © 2017

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