Allergic and autoimmune reactions to xenobiotics: how do they arise?

Immunol Today. 1998 Mar;19(3):133-41. doi: 10.1016/s0167-5699(97)01219-x.


Induction of allergic and autoimmune reactions by drugs and other chemicals constitutes a major public health problem. Elucidation of the underlying mechanisms might help improve diagnostic tools and therapeutic approaches. Here, Peter Griem and colleagues focus on several aspects of neoantigen formation by xenobiotics: metabolism of xenobiotics into reactive, haptenic metabolites; polymorphisms of metabolizing enzymes; induction of costimulatory signals; and sensitization of T cells.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autoimmunity / drug effects*
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / immunology*
  • Environmental Exposure
  • Humans
  • Models, Immunological
  • Public Health
  • Xenobiotics / immunology*


  • Xenobiotics