Immunologic cross-reactivity between different albumin-bound isocyanates

J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1983 Feb;71(2):197-205. doi: 10.1016/0091-6749(83)90100-8.


Sera of six workers with conclusive evidence for IgE-mediated sensitization to isocyanates were used for evaluation of immunologic cross-reactivities among eight different isocyanate-protein conjugates. In all cases RAST and/or skin-test investigations revealed the presence of IgE antibodies reacting specifically with HSA conjugated with those isocyanates to which workers were exposed as well as with other isocyanates with which they had not been in contact. By the RAST inhibition technique, moderate to strong mutual cross-reactivities between all tested isocyanate-HSA conjugates--even between aromatic and aliphatic ones--could be demonstrated in tests with five sera. The magnitudes of cross-reactivities differed, however, from one patient to another. One serum contained IgE antibodies that were almost completely specific to TDI-HSA; with this serum only weak cross-reactivities with other isocyanate conjugates could be demonstrated. These results indicate the predominance of closely related antigenic determinants in HSA conjugated with different isocyanates. The common antibody-binding regions are obviously recognized to different extents by antibodies of clinically sensitized workers, indicating individual differences in specificities and avidities of antibody populations. Nearly complete lack of IgE binding of ovalbumin-bound TDI in RAST and RAST inhibition indicates carrier-specific antigenicity of isocyanate-protein conjugates. In addition, since unmodified HSA did not bind IgE, antigenic determinants of the conjugates studied should be predominantly formed by the isocyanate-protein bond regions and concurrently by neighboring amino acid residues of the HSA molecule.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aerosols
  • Asthma / chemically induced
  • Cyanates / adverse effects
  • Cyanates / immunology*
  • Cyanates / metabolism
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / etiology
  • Humans
  • Isocyanates*
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Diseases / chemically induced
  • Radioallergosorbent Test
  • Serum Albumin / metabolism*
  • Skin Tests
  • Toluene 2,4-Diisocyanate / immunology


  • Aerosols
  • Cyanates
  • Isocyanates
  • Serum Albumin
  • 1,6-hexamethylene diisocyanate
  • Toluene 2,4-Diisocyanate
  • 4,4'-diphenylmethane diisocyanate
  • isocyanic acid