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Does skin prick test reactivity to purified allergens correlate with clinical severity of peanut allergy?


K. A. B. M. Peeters, Department of Dermatology/Allergology (G02.124), University Medical Centre Utrecht, PO Box 85.500, 3508 GA Utrecht, The Netherlands


Background Recognition of specific peanut allergens or the diversity of IgE binding to peanut allergens may play a role in the elicitation of severe allergic reactions.

Objective To investigate whether sensitization to individual allergens Ara h 1, Ara h 2, Ara h 3 and Ara h 6 is correlated with clinical severity.

Methods The reactivity of purified peanut allergens was measured by skin prick test (SPT) and by IgE immunoblot in 30 patients. The results were related to the clinical reactivity by history, and in 25 of them to the eliciting dose (ED).

Results The majority of patients recognized Ara h 2 and Ara h 6. Patients with severe symptoms had a higher SPT response to Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 at low concentrations (0.1 μg/mL) and to Ara h 1 and Ara h 3 at higher concentrations (100 μg/mL), compared with patients with mild symptoms. They also recognized a greater number of allergens and showed a higher cumulative SPT response compared with patients with mild symptoms. No significant differences were observed between patients with a low or high ED.

Conclusions Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 appeared to be more potent than Ara h 1 and Ara h 3. Both SPT reactivity to low concentrations of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 and to higher concentrations of Ara h 1 and Ara h 3 were shown to be indicative of severe symptoms.

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