Proteolytic, lipidergic and polysaccharide molecular recognition shape innate responses to house dust mite allergens

Allergy. 2020 Jan;75(1):33-53. doi: 10.1111/all.13940. Epub 2019 Jul 11.


House dust mites (HDMs) are sources of an extensive repertoire of allergens responsible for a range of allergic conditions. Technological advances have accelerated the identification of these allergens and characterized their putative roles within HDMs. Understanding their functional bioactivities is illuminating how they interact with the immune system to cause disease and how interrelations between them are essential to maximize allergic responses. Two types of allergen bioactivity, namely proteolysis and peptidolipid/lipid binding, elicit IgE and stimulate bystander responses to unrelated allergens. Much of this influence arises from Toll-like receptor (TLR) 4 or TLR2 signalling and, in the case of protease allergens, the activation of additional pleiotropic effectors with strong disease linkage. Of related interest is the interaction of HDM allergens with common components of the house dust matrix, through either their binding to allergens or their autonomous modulation of immune receptors. Herein, we provide a contemporary view of how proteolysis, lipid-binding activity and interactions with polysaccharides and polysaccharide molecular recognition systems coordinate the principal responses which underlie allergy. The power of the catalytically competent group 1 HDM protease allergen component is demonstrated by a review of disclosures surrounding the efficacy of novel inhibitors produced by structure-based design.

Keywords: Toll-like receptors; house dust mite; lipid-binding protein; polysaccharide; protease allergen.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, Dermatophagoides / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Hypersensitivity / immunology*
  • Immunity, Innate / immunology*
  • Lipids / immunology
  • Pathogen-Associated Molecular Pattern Molecules / immunology*
  • Polysaccharides / immunology
  • Proteolysis
  • Pyroglyphidae / immunology*


  • Antigens, Dermatophagoides
  • Lipids
  • Pathogen-Associated Molecular Pattern Molecules
  • Polysaccharides