Immunoglobulin production pattern in allergic and non-allergic subjects

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Allergic rhinitis (AR) is characterized by Th2 polarized immune response, such as increased IL-4 and reduced IFN-γ production, and by a functional defect of T regulatory cells. This impaired immune response profile influences the pattern of immunoglobulin (Ig) production in allergic patients. However, no studies have compared the pattern of inhalant allergen-specific Ig classes between allergic patients and normal subjects. The aim of this study is to therefore investigate the allergen-specific IgE, IgG, IgG4, and IgA serum level pattern in a group of patients with pollen allergy and in non-allergic healthy subjects. One hundred and two allergic patients (evaluated both out of and in the pollen season) were enrolled. In addition, 50 healthy non-allergic subjects were recruited during the whole year. Serum allergen-specific IgE, IgG, IgG4, and IgA for Parietaria, grasses, and birch were quantitatively determined by the ImmunoCAP System method. Allergen-specific IgE, IgG, IgG4, and IgA serum levels were significantly different for each tested allergen (p=0.0001 for each class) among groups. Allergic patients, mainly during pollen season, showed the highest IgG, IgG4, and IgA levels. The present study therefore provides the preliminary evidence that Ig production pattern toward inhalant allergens may depend on the specificity of the allergenic response both in non-allergic subjects and allergic patients Allergic patients do not show a defect of IgG and IgA classes. In addition, this study is the first that quantitatively evaluates the Ig classes. However, further studies should include non-allergic subjects evaluated both during and out of the pollen season.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-199
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Inflammation
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2010


  • Allergen-specific IgG
  • Allergic patients
  • IgA
  • IgE
  • IgG4
  • Non-allergic subjects
  • Pollens
  • Serum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy


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