Tree pollen allergy. III. Cross reactions based on results from skin prick tests and the RAST in hay fever patients. A multi-centre study

Allergy. 1987 Apr;42(3):205-14. doi: 10.1111/j.1398-9995.1987.tb02201.x.


872 adult hay fever patients were investigated with skin tests, using 20 different tree pollen allergens, and Phadebas RAST, using eight different tree pollen allergens. Correlation between test results with the different allergens were studied employing the Spearman's correlation coefficient (Rho). Most combinations showed statistically significant correlations. The highest values of Rho (0.8-0.9) were found for pollen from combinations of trees belonging to the families Betulaceae, Corylaceae and Fagaceae (birch, alder, hazel, beech and oak). High values were also found between pollens from aspen and sallow (belonging to Salicaceae). With several of the trees a high degree of pollen cross sensitization was found, even with trees from a different plant family. Since most of the patients were allergic to birch pollen, some of the reactions to other pollens could be due to allergens shared by birch. To exclude this possibility, a separate analysis was performed for patients having no birch pollen allergy. Even in these patients evidence of cross sensitization was found. It is concluded that cross reactions are common among tree pollens and are most pronounced within botanical families.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Cross Reactions
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pollen / immunology*
  • Radioallergosorbent Test
  • Rhinitis, Allergic, Seasonal / immunology*
  • Skin Tests
  • Sweden
  • Trees