Characterization of a mouse model of allergy to a major occupational latex glove allergen Hev b 5

Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2003 May 15;167(10):1393-9. doi: 10.1164/rccm.200209-1002OC. Epub 2003 Feb 25.


Allergen-specific immunotherapy is a clinically proven effective treatment for many allergic diseases, including asthma; however, it is not currently available for latex allergy because of the high risk of anaphylaxis. There is, therefore, a crucial need for an animal model of latex allergy in which to develop effective immunotherapy. Previous mouse models of latex allergy either did not characterize the allergic pulmonary immune response or used crude latex extracts, making it difficult to quantify the contribution of individual proteins and limiting their usefulness for developing specific immunotherapy. We immunized mice with recombinant Hev b 5, a defined major latex allergen, or latex glove protein extract, representing the range of occupationally encountered processed latex allergens. The immune response was compared with that seen in ovalbumin-immunized mice. Immunization with Hev b 5 or glove extract elicits hallmarks of allergic pulmonary Th2-type immune responses, comparable to those for ovalbumin, including (1) serum antigen-specific IgE, (2) an eosinophilic inflammatory infiltrate in the lung, (3) increased interleukin-5 in lung bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, and (4) mucus hypersecretion by epithelial cells in the lung airways. This mouse model will aid the development of potentially curative treatments for latex-sensitized individuals, including those with occupational asthma.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Allergens / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Biopsy, Needle
  • Blotting, Western
  • Bronchial Hyperreactivity / pathology*
  • Bronchial Hyperreactivity / physiopathology
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / cytology
  • Cytokines / analysis
  • Desensitization, Immunologic*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Female
  • Immunoglobulin E / analysis
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Latex / pharmacology
  • Latex Hypersensitivity / immunology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Occupational Diseases / immunology
  • Probability
  • Random Allocation
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Allergens
  • Cytokines
  • Latex
  • Immunoglobulin E