Background: IgE recognition of panallergens having highly conserved sequence regions, structure, and function and shared by inhalant and food allergen sources is often observed.
Methods: We evaluated the IgE recognition profile of profilins (Bet v 2, Cyn d 12, Hel a 2, Hev b 8, Mer a 1, Ole e 2, Par j 3, Phl p 12, Pho d 2), PR-10 proteins (Aln g 1, Api g 1, Bet v 1.0101, Bet v 1.0401, Cor a 1, Dau c 1 and Mal d 1.0108) and tropomyosins (Ani s 3, Der p 10, Hel as 1, Pen i 1, Pen m 1, Per a 7) using the Immuno-Solid phase Allergen Chip (ISAC) microarray system. The three panallergen groups were well represented among the allergenic molecules immobilized on the ISAC. Moreover, they are distributed in several taxonomical allergenic sources, either close or distant, and have a route of exposure being either inhalation or ingestion.
Results: 3,113 individuals (49.9% female) were selected on the basis of their reactivity to profilins, PR-10 or tropomyosins. 1,521 (48.8%) patients were reactive to profilins (77.6% Mer a 1 IgE(+)), 1,420 (45.6%) to PR-10 (92.5% Bet v 1 IgE(+)) and 632 (20.3%) to tropomyosins (68% Der p 10 IgE(+)). A significant direct relationship between different representative molecules within each group of panallergens was found. 2,688 patients (86.4%) recognized only one out of the three distinct groups of molecules as confirmed also by hierarchical clustering analysis.
Conclusions: Unless exposed to most of the allergens in the same or related allergenic sources, a preferential IgE response to distinct panallergens has been recorded. Allergen microarray IgE testing increases our knowledge of the IgE immune response and related epidemiological features within and between homologous molecules better describing the patients' immunological phenotypes.