Childhood risk factors for atopy and the importance of early intervention

J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2001 Apr;107(4):567-74. doi: 10.1067/mai.2001.112943.


The increasing prevalence of atopic diseases, particularly atopy-associated asthma, has become a major challenge for allergists and public health authorities in many countries. The understanding of the natural history of the atopic march, including the determinants that are modifiable and might become candidates for preventive intervention, is still very limited. Information provided by cross-sectional studies can only generate hypotheses, which need to be supported by prospective, longitudinal, cohort studies. Ultimately, it will depend on the results of well-controlled intervention studies to identify which nutritional, environmental, or lifestyle-related factors should be considered for early intervention and might be useful to reverse the epidemiologic trend.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers
  • Child
  • Environmental Pollutants / toxicity
  • Humans
  • Hypersensitivity / etiology*
  • Hypersensitivity / genetics
  • Hypersensitivity / prevention & control
  • Infections / immunology
  • Life Style
  • Risk Factors
  • Smoking / adverse effects


  • Biomarkers
  • Environmental Pollutants