Immunotherapy with Alpare® in patients with respiratory allergy to Parietaria pollen: a two year double-blind placebo-controlled study


Dr C. D'Amato, Division of Pneumonology and Allergology, Hospital “A. Cardarelli”, Via E. Nicolardi Parco Avolio 32, 80131 Napoli, Italy.


Allergy to Parietaria judaica pollen causes significant morbidity in many areas of the world. In addition to rhinitis, patients who are allergic to this pollen have a high incidence of asthma. The pollinating season is long, making this particular allergy challenging for clinicians to treat. This study was designed to determine if immunotherapy with an alum adsorbed partially purified Parietaria extract (Alpare Parietaria) containing a targeted maintenance dose of 12 500 BUs was effective in decreasing rhinitis symptoms in patients allergic to Parieiaria. Using a double-blind placebo-controlled technique 36 patients received placebo or active extract for 2 years. Twenty (11 placebo and nine active) completed the 2 year study. Efficacy of treatment was evaluated by determining changes in skin reactivity, visual analog scores, diary symptom scores and end of study assessments. Reactions were monitored as well. Skin-test suppression was marginally significant in the actively treated group after 1 year and showed even more significant suppression after the second year. Nasal block, rhinorrhoea and sneezing all were significantly decreased in the active group. The nasal provocation test did not show a significant change after 1 year, in either group, but after 2 years of treatment the active group did show significant improvement. Although almost all patients in the actively treated group experienced local reactions, the incidence of systemic reactions was not different between the two groups. In conclusion, immunotherapy with this extract at this dose was effective in ameliorated rhinitis symptoms in patients allergic to Parietaria judaica.