Contact Allergy from Plants

  • John C. Mitchell


The causes of adverse human skin reactions to plants can be summarized as follows:-
  1. 1.

    Mechanical injury, e.g. from a spine.

  2. 2.

    Toxicological effects, e.g. alkaloidal poisoning from wood dust of Gonioma (Apocynaceae).

  3. 3.

    Pharmacological effects, e.g. histamine, acetylcholine liberation by stinging hair of nettle, Urtica (Urticaceae).

  4. 4.

    Contact dermatitis by irritancy; chemical, e.g. from Euphorbia (Euphorbiaceae), or mechanical and chemical, e.g. granuloma from Opuntia (Cactaceae).

  5. 5.

    Contact dermatitis by immunological effects; immediate hypersensitivity (endogenous or contact urticaria), e.g. from Agave (Agavaceae), or delayed hypersensitivity e.g. from Toxicodendron (Anacardiaceae). Epiphytodermatitis: lichens and liverworts, e.g. Fmllania (Jubilaceae), can cause dermatitis which has incorrectly been attributed to trees such as oak, Querous, (Fagaceae) and ‘cedar’, Thuja (Cupressaceae), on which these epiphytic plants reside.



Wood Dust Contact Dermatitis Calcium Oxalate Allergic Contact Dermatitis Sesquiterpene Lactone 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • John C. Mitchell
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of DermatologyUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada

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