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Linking allergy to autoimmune disease *

Type I allergy is a classical Th2-driven hypersensitivity disease based on IgE recognition of environmental allergens. Exposure of allergic individuals to exogenous allergens leads to immediate type inflammation caused by degranulation of mast cells via IgE-allergen immune complexes and the release of inflammatory mediators, proteases and pro-inflammatory cytokines. However, allergic inflammation can occur and persist in the absence of exposure to exogenous allergens and might paradoxically resemble a Th1-mediated chronic inflammatory reaction. We summarize evidence supporting the view that autoimmune mechanisms might contribute to these processes. IgE recognition of autoantigens might augment allergic inflammation in the absence of exogenous allergen exposure. Moreover, autoantigens that activate Th1-immune responses could contribute to chronic inflammation in allergy, thus linking allergy to autoimmunity.

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THE INFORMATION IN THIS WEBSITE IS OFFERED FOR GENERAL EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND DOES NOT IMPLY OR GIVE MEDICAL ADVICE. No Doctor/Patient relationship shall be deemed to have arisen simply by reading the information contained on these pages, and you should consult with your personal physician/care giver regarding your medical treatment before undergoing any sort of treatment or therapy.

Published on 03-05-2010
Authors: Rudolf Valenta , Irene Mittermann, Thomas Werfel, Holger Garn and Harald Renz
Source: Trends in Immunology, Volume 30, Issue 3, March 2009, Pages 109-116