Numerous clinical studies show that direct interference with the IgE response leads to a decrease or elimination of allergic symptoms. The aim of these studies was to design a therapy aimed at decreasing IgE levels in order to ameliorate atopic disease. To this end, a murine monoclonal antibody, MAE11, directed against IgE was identified, which had all the properties necessary to interfere with IgE responses, but lacked the harmful side effects of inducing receptor cross-linking. The antibody was selected on the basis of its ability to bind circulating IgE at the same site as the high-affinity receptor, thus blocking the binding of IgE to mast cells and basophils. To allow for possible chronic administration and to avoid the problems of antigenicity, MAE11 was humanized. The best of several humanized variants, version 25 (rhumAb-E25) was selected since it possessed binding affinity and biological activity comparable to MAE11. Clinical studies are underway to determine the safety and efficacy of this treatment for allergic rhinitis and asthma.