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. 2019 Mar;26(7):6290-6300.
doi: 10.1007/s11356-019-04146-w. Epub 2019 Jan 21.

Asteraceae Species as Potential Environmental Factors of Allergy

Free PMC article

Asteraceae Species as Potential Environmental Factors of Allergy

Marta Denisow-Pietrzyk et al. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. .
Free PMC article


The statistics from Europe and the USA have proven a high risk for skin diseases associated with plant contact. Therefore, plant-induced dermatitis is of increasing attention in dermatology. The focus of this paper was to present the current knowledge on aspects of contact allergy related to Asteraceae (Compositae) species. The Asteraceae family is one of the largest in the world with members across all continents. The PubMed/Medline databases have been searched. The Asteraceae representatives consist of diverse secondary metabolites, which exhibit various advantageous effects in humans. In particular, sesquiterpene lactones (SLs) may cause sensitization resulting in skin irritation and inflammation. In this study, we tried to reveal the allergenic potential of several Asteraceae species. The Asteraceae-related allergy symptoms involve eczema, hay fever, asthma, or even anaphylaxis. Furthermore, the evidence of severe cross-reactivity with food and pollen allergens (PFS) in patients sensitive to Asteraceae allergens have been announced. Further identification and characterization of secondary metabolites and possible allergens in Asteraceae are necessary for the better understanding of Asteraceae-related immune response. The Asteraceae allergy screening panel (the SL mix and the Compositae mix of five plant species) is a promising tool to improve allergy diagnostics and therapy.

Keywords: Allergic contact dermatitis; Allergy; Asteraceae; Environment; Irritant contact dermatitis; Sesquiterpene lactones.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


Fig. 1
Fig. 1
Structures of several common SL compounds found in plant tissue of the Asteraceae (Compositae) species presented according to their chemical classification. 1. Germacranolides—lactuside A (A), taraxinix acid (B); 2. Guaianolides—matricarin (C), achillin (D); 3. Eudesmanolides—artecanin (E), balchanin = santamarin (F); 4. Pseudoguaianolides—parthenin (G), helenalin (H)

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