Edited by: Stephan Weidinger
New insights into the epidemiology of childhood atopic dermatitis
Article first published online: 21 NOV 2013
© 2013 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd
Special Issue: Atopic dermatitis
Volume 69, Issue 1, pages 3–16, January 2014
How to Cite
New insights into the epidemiology of childhood atopic dermatitis. Allergy 2014; 69: 3–16., .
- Issue published online: 20 JAN 2014
- Article first published online: 21 NOV 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 15 AUG 2013
- UK National Institute for Health Research
- UK Department of Health
- atopic dermatitis;
- atopic eczema;
There is a growing desire to explain the worldwide rise in the prevalence of atopic dermatitis (AD). Trend data on the burden of AD suggest that the picture in the developing world may soon resemble that of wealthier nations, where AD affects over 20% of children. This, combined with significant variations in prevalence within countries, emphasizes the importance of environmental factors. Many hypotheses have been explored, from the modulation of immune priming by hygiene, gut microbiota diversity, and exposure to endotoxins through farm animals to the effects of pollution, climate, and diet. The discovery of the filaggrin skin barrier gene and its importance in AD development and severity has brought the focus on gene–environment interactions and the identification of environmental factors that impact on skin barrier function. This article reviews our current understanding of the epidemiology of AD, with an emphasis on the findings reported in the international literature over the last 5 years.