Background. House dust mites (HDM) are among the most important allergen sources worldwide, representing a major cause of perennial allergic rhinitis and asthma. Aim. To evaluate the prevalence of IgE responses towards a comprehensive panel of HDM allergens and to evaluate the implications of molecular sensitization profiles on respiratory symptoms. Methods. 155 consecutive HDM-allergic patients (mean age: 27.5 years; range: 1-62; female: 63), 86 affected by rhinitis and 68 by asthma, were enrolled. Specific IgE reactivity to Der f 1, Der p 1, Der f 2, Der p 2, Der p 5, Der p 7, Der p 10, Der p 11, Der p 20, Der p 21 and Der p 23 was tested in patients' sera using the last version of the multiparametric assay Allergy Explorer (ALEX). Results. In all, major and minor allergens were positive, respectively, in 96.8% and 50.9% of the patients. Prevalence and IgE levels of Der f 1, Der f 2, Der p 1 and Der p 20 were significantly higher in asthmatic patients (p less than 0.05), whereas subjects negative for minor allergens resulted more frequently suffering from rhinitis (p = 0.0001). Asthmatic patients had IgE reactivity to a larger number of HDM allergens (mean 5.4; SD ± 2.3) than patients with only rhinitis (mean 4.2; SD ± 2.5) (p = 0.003), whereas no differences in the number of HDM positive molecules and in the specific IgE levels were found among different ages. Conclusions. This study confirms that the assessment of IgE to a comprehensive panel of HDM allergens defines different serological reactivity profiles that seem associated with different clinical presentations.
Keywords: allergens; component resolved diagnosis (CRD); house dust mites (HDM) allergy; multiplex assay; specific IgE.