Immunology

Six tips to help a friend with food allergies

Food allergies are a serious and life-threatening condition that is estimated to affect 4-8% of children and 6-8% of adults in the United States. It occurs when one's immune system reacts to an ingested food. Reactions can ...

Immunology

A novel painless and reliable allergy test

Although allergies are widespread, their diagnosis is complex and, depending on the type of allergy, the prospects of success with therapy are not always clear. Skin tests so far have been unpleasant, time-consuming and associated ...

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Allergen

An allergen is a nonparasitic antigen capable of stimulating a type-I hypersensitivity reaction in atopic individuals.

Most humans mount significant Immunoglobulin E (IgE) responses only as a defense against parasitic infections. However, some individuals mount an IgE response against common environmental antigens. This hereditory predisposition is called atopy. In atopic individuals, non-parasitic antigens stimulate inappropriate IgE production, leading to type I hypersensitivity. Sensitivities vary from one person to another and it is possible to be allergic to an extraordinary range of substances.

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