Role of Allergens in Asthma


Because of the pandemic in both the  prevalence and morbidity  of asthma , there is a need for understanding the basis of allergy development  and to develop effective allergy prevention strategies . Potential strategies involve modulating the principal factors responsible for the atopic state through genetic , immunologic , and environmental manipulation . However , at present the best way for preventing asthma is through environmental controls  in attempt to reduce patient exposure . A particularly critical time is early infancy . Although , prenatal identification of infants most at risk for allergic disease is ideal.

Allergens are macromolecules , usually proteinaceous or glycopproteins in nature , that sensitize the host forproducing specific IgE antibodies and allergic reactions.

Most naturally occuring allergens share common charaqcteristics : molecular weights 10-70 Kd, foreignness for host , stability in soluble from and solubility in fluids .

Particles dervied from seed plants and fungi , as well as certain algae , bacteria , actinomycetes , and protozoa , regularly undergo atmospheric transport . The resulting aerosols very with land use and cucles of plant growth. Additional biogenic debris . including  mammalian danders and arthropod emanations also serve as airborne allergens ( aeroallergens )

There are different factors to determine allergenisity including : concentration of allergens , temperature and humidity . Concentration of indoor allergens could be more than outdoor allergens.

A greater understanding of the genetic and immunologic basis of atopy will surely lead to new and better strategies to prevent asthma . An “Allergy Prevention Bill of Rights” could include the  right to be free from ETS (Environmental Tobacco Smoke): the right to breathe clean , unpolluted air : the right to breast-fed not formula-fed : and the right to information regarding the possible risks associated with exposure to pets and house dust mites.


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