Journal: The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology
The influence of early exposure to allergenic foods on the subsequent development of food allergy remains uncertain.
Cat allergy in human subjects is usually caused by the major cat allergen Fel d 1 and is found in approximately 10% of the Western population. Currently, there is no efficient and safe therapy for cat allergy available. Allergic patients usually try to avoid cats or treat their allergy symptoms.
Peanut sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) for 1 year has been shown to induce modest clinical desensitization in allergic children. Studies of oral immunotherapy, epicutaneous immunotherapy, and SLIT have suggested additional benefit with extended treatment.
Alcohol consumption in western pregnant women is not uncommon and could be a risk factor for childhood atopic disease. However, reported alcohol intake may be unreliable, and associations are likely to be confounded.
Allergy immunotherapy targets the immunological cause of allergic rhinoconjunctivitis and allergic asthma and has the potential to alter the natural course of allergic disease.
Newborns display distinct immune responses, leaving them vulnerable to infections and impairing immunization. Targeting newborn dendritic cells (DCs), which integrate vaccine signals into adaptive immune responses, might enable development of age-specific vaccine formulations to overcome suboptimal immunization.
In the last decade, the full picture of the role of innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) has been gradually revealed. ILCs are classified into 3 groups based on their transcription factors and cytokine production patterns, which mirror helper T-cell subsets. Unlike T cells and B cells, ILCs do not have antigen receptors. They promptly respond to multiple tissue-derived factors, such as cytokines and alarmins, and produce multiple proinflammatory and immunoregulatory cytokines. It has been reported that ILC-derived cytokines are important for the induction and regulation of inflammation. Accumulating evidence suggests that ILCs play substantial roles in protection against infection and the pathogenesis of inflammatory diseases, such as allergic diseases and autoimmune diseases. Different ILC subsets localize in distinct tissue/organ niches and receive tissue-derived signals on different types of inflammation, which allows them to acquire diverse phenotypes with specialized effector capacities. In this review we highlight the roles of ILCs in a variety of organs, such as the airway, skin, and gastrointestinal tract, in the context of allergic and nonallergic inflammation.
The incidence of food allergy has increased dramatically in the last few decades in westernized developed countries. We propose that the Western lifestyle and diet promote innate danger signals and immune responses through production of “alarmins.” Alarmins are endogenous molecules secreted from cells undergoing nonprogrammed cell death that signal tissue and cell damage. High molecular group S (HMGB1) is a major alarmin that binds to the receptor for advanced glycation end-products (RAGE). Advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) are also present in foods. We propose the “false alarm” hypothesis, in which AGEs that are present in or formed from the food in our diet are predisposing to food allergy. The Western diet is high in AGEs, which are derived from cooked meat, oils, and cheese. AGEs are also formed in the presence of a high concentration of sugars. We propose that a diet high in AGEs and AGE-forming sugars results in misinterpretation of a threat from dietary allergens, promoting the development of food allergy. AGEs and other alarmins inadvertently prime innate signaling through multiple mechanisms, resulting in the development of allergic phenotypes. Current hypotheses and models of food allergy do not adequately explain the dramatic increase in food allergy in Western countries. Dietary AGEs and AGE-forming sugars might be the missing link, a hypothesis supported by a number of convincing epidemiologic and experimental observations, as discussed in this article.
Targeting the lower airway microbiome may provide a novel approach to prevention of preschool wheezing attacks.
Programming of the immune system during fetal development can influence asthma-related risk factors and outcomes in later life. Vitamin D is a well-recognized immune modulator, and deficiency of this nutrient during pregnancy is hypothesized to influence disease development in offspring.