Debbie Maurer

and 19 more

Background: The impact of physical activity (PA) on immune response is a hot topic in exercise immunology, but studies involving asthmatic children are scarce. We examine the level of PA and TV attendance (TVA) in asthmatic children to assess the role on asthma control and immune response to various stimulants. Methods: Weekly PA and daily TVA were obtained from questionnaires at inclusion of the PreDicta study. PBMC cultures were stimulated with phytohemagglutinin (PHA), R848, poly I:C and zymosan. Cytokines were measured and quantified in cell culture supernatants using luminometric multiplex immunofluorescence beads-based assay. Results: Asthmatic preschoolers showed significantly more TVA than their healthy peers (58.6% vs. 41.5% 1-3h daily and only 25.7% vs. 47.2% ≤ 1h daily). Poor asthma control was associated with less frequent PA (75% no or occasional activity in uncontrolled vs. 20% in controlled asthma; 25% ≥ 3x weekly vs. 62%). Asthmatics with increased PA exhibited elevated cytokine levels in response to stimulants, suggesting a readiness of circulating immune cells for type-1, -2 and -17 cytokine release compared to low-PA and high-TVA subjects. Low PA and high TVA were associated with increased proinflammatory cytokines. Proinflammatory cytokines were correlating with each other in in-vitro immune responses of asthmatic children, but not healthy controls. Conclusion: Asthmatic children show more sedentary behavior than healthy subjects, while poor asthma control leads to a decrease in PA. Asthmatic children profit from exercise, as elevated cytokine levels in stimulated conditions indicate an immune system prepared for a strong response in case of infection.

Ismail Ogulur

and 27 more

Allergic diseases include asthma, atopic-dermatitis, allergic-rhinitis, drug hypersensitivity and food-allergy. During the past years, there has been a global outbreak of allergic diseases, presenting a considerable medical and socioeconomical-burden. A large fraction of allergic diseases is characterized by a type-2 immune response involving Th2 cells, type-2 innate lymphoid cells, eosinophils, mast cells, and M2 macrophages. Biomarkers are valuable parameters for precision medicine as they provide information on the disease endotypes, clusters, precision diagnoses, identification of therapeutic targets, and monitoring of treatment efficacies. The availability of powerful omics technologies, together with integrated data analysis and network-based approaches can help the identification of clinically useful biomarkers. These biomarkers need to be accurately quantified using robust and reproducible methods, such as reliable and point-of-care systems. Ideally, samples should be collected using quick, cost-efficient and non-invasive methods. In recent years, a plethora of research has been directed towards finding novel biomarkers of allergic diseases. Promising biomarkers of type-2 allergic diseases include sputum eosinophils, serum periostin and exhaled nitric-oxide. Several other biomarkers, such as pro-inflammatory mediators, miRNAs, eicosanoid molecules, epithelial barrier integrity, and microbiota changes are useful for diagnosis and monitoring of allergic diseases and can be quantified in serum, body-fluids and exhaled-air. Herein, we review recent studies on biomarkers for the diagnosis and treatment of asthma, chronic-urticaria, atopic-dermatitis, allergic-rhinitis, chronic-rhinosinusitis, food-allergies, anaphylaxis, drug hypersensitivity and allergen-immunotherapy. In addition, we discuss COVID-19 and allergic diseases within the perspective of biomarkers and recommendations on the management of allergic and asthmatic patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Yu Wang

and 6 more

Background: Locusts as model systems are widely used in many biological laboratories worldwide. Occupational exposure to locusts induces a high prevalence of allergic sensitization. However, knowledge on occupational locust allergens remains unclear. This study aimed to identify a novel allergen from locusts that causes occupational allergies. Methods: We conducted a 20-year retrospective survey of 94 persons using questionnaires and a cross-sectional survey of 57 persons using questionnaires and immunological tests for occupational allergies in long-term locust laboratories. We identified the major allergens by immunoblotting and analysed them by LC-MS/MS. The allergenicity of the major allergen proteins was assessed by specific IgE (sIgE) detection, immunoblotting and ELISA inhibition assays. Results: The retrospective survey indicated that the frequency of occupational allergies was relatively low (13.8%), while the cross-sectional survey showed a higher frequency (40.4%). The symptoms in most allergic males were allergic rhinitis and asthma, while females showed higher prevalence of atopic dermatitis. Occupational exposure for 2-3 h per day or continuing one and half years obviously increased the allergy risk. We identified the hexamerin-2 protein as a major allergen in locusts. Purified hexamerin-2 protein achieved approximately 60% serum IgE reactivity with locust protein extract. The potential for cross-reactivity with cockroaches was indicated by sequence alignment of the hexamerin-2 protein and allergens of cockroaches. Conclusion: Occupational exposure is an important risk factor for locust allergy. The hexamerin-2 protein of locusts as a major allergen in occupational allergy was identified for the first time.

Heimo Breiteneder

and 14 more

Modern healthcare requires a proactive and individualized response to diseases, combining precision diagnosis and personalized treatment. Accordingly, the approach to patients with allergic diseases encompasses novel developments in the area of personalized medicine, disease phenotyping and endotyping and the development and application of reliable biomarkers. A detailed clinical history and physical examination followed by the detection of IgE immunoreactivity against specific allergens still represents the state of the art. However, nowadays, further emphasis focuses on the optimization of diagnostic and therapeutic standards and a large number of studies have been investigating the biomarkers of allergic diseases, including asthma, atopic dermatitis, allergic rhinitis, food allergy, urticaria and anaphylaxis. Various biomarkers have been developed by omics technologies, some of which lead to a better classification of the distinct phenotypes or endotypes. The introduction of biologicals to clinical practice increases the need for biomarkers for patient selection, prediction of outcomes and monitoring, to allow for an adequate choice of the duration of these costly and long-lasting therapies. Escalating healthcare costs together with questions on the efficacy of the current management of allergic diseases requires further development of a biomarker-driven approach. Here, we review biomarkers in diagnosis and treatment of asthma, atopic dermatitis, allergic rhinitis, viral infections, chronic rhinosinusitis, food allergy, drug hypersensitivity and allergen-immunotherapy with a special emphasis on specific IgE, microbiome and epithelial barrier. In addition, EAACI guidelines on biologicals are discussed within the perspective of biomarkers.


and 41 more

In December 2019, China reported the first cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This disease, caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has developed into a pandemic. To date it has resulted in ~5.6 million confirmed cases and caused 353,334 related deaths worldwide. Unequivocally, the COVID-19 pandemic is the gravest health and socio-economic crisis of our time. In this context, numerous questions have emerged in demand of basic scientific information and evidence-based medical advice on SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19. Although the majority of the patients show a very mild, self-limiting viral respiratory disease, many clinical manifestations in severe patients are unique to COVID-19, such as severe lymphopenia and eosinopenia, extensive pneumonia, a “cytokine storm” leading to acute respiratory distress syndrome, endothelitis, thrombo-embolic complications and multiorgan failure. The epidemiologic features of COVID-19 are distinctive and have changed throughout the pandemic. Vaccine and drug development studies and clinical trials are rapidly growing at an unprecedented speed. However, basic and clinical research on COVID-19-related topics should be based on more coordinated high-quality studies. This paper answers pressing questions, formulated by young clinicians and scientists, on SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19 and allergy, focusing on the following topics: virology, immunology, diagnosis, management of patients with allergic disease and asthma, treatment, clinical trials, drug discovery, vaccine development and epidemiology. Over 140 questions were answered by experts in the field providing a comprehensive and practical overview of COVID-19 and allergic disease.