, Volume 58, Issue 9, pp 523-536
Date: 31 Mar 2009

Current immunological approaches for management of allergic rhinitis and bronchial asthma

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A large population world over is affected with allergic diseases and asthma. Pharmacotherapy for allergic diseases and asthma is effective in controlling symptoms but on discontinuation of medication, symptoms reoccur. In contrast, immunotherapy modifies and corrects the underlying pathological immune responses in an antigen-specific manner. Immunotherapy shows an increase in IgG (blocking antibody) that competes with IgE for allergen, inhibiting the release of inflammatory mediators. Recent studies suggest that immunotherapy acts by modifying CD4+ T-cell responses either by immune deviation, T-cell anergy and/or both. Current immunological approaches for management of allergies and asthma involve immunization with native allergen, modified allergen, peptides/cDNA of allergen, anti-IgE, adjuvants coupled allergen, including immunostimulatory DNA sequences, cytokines, and bacterial products. These approaches modulate the immune response and are intended to give long-term benefit.

Responsible Editor: M. J. Parnham.