Analysis of mite allergic patients in a diverse territory by improved diagnostic tools


Correspondence: Domingo Barber, Departamento I+D, ALK-ABELLO, S. A., Miguel Fleta, 19, 28037 Madrid, Spain.




There are few studies comparing the sensitization with mite allergens from different mite species which could potentially be the cause of allergy.


To improve the diagnosis of mite allergic patients from a diverse territory in which D. pteronyssinus/D. farinae mites together with storage mites could be present in the environment.


Four hundred and seventy-seven patients (both children and adults) from different regions, covering the main mite prevalent areas of Spain, were recruited. sIgE to eight allergens was measured together with SPT to whole mite extracts, level of mite allergen exposure, and specific IgG4. BAT and CAST was performed in a subgroup of patients.


D. pteronyssinus and L. destructor were more prevalent in Atlantic areas, whereas D. farinae predominate in Mediterranean areas. About 90% of patients were sensitized to group 1 and/or group 2 allergens. Group 2 was the most prevalent, and the IgE response/intensity of sensitization in BAT was higher. sIgE to Der p 2/Der f 2 was almost fully cross-reactive, but no cross-reactivity was detected with Lep d 2. Group 1 allergens were also cross-reactive, but in some patients a species-specific response was observed. sIgE to Lep d 2 was associated with SPT results to storage mites. Sensitization to Der p 1 was more frequent in children, whereas Lep d 2 sensitization was more frequent in adults. A higher ratio IgE/IgG4 to Der p 2 was associated with the presence of allergic asthma.


An improved diagnosis algorithm has been established. Group 2 allergens seem to have a leading role in mite allergy, but as group 1 sensitization could be species-specific in some patients and its prevalence is higher in children, an adequate balance on major mite species and major allergens must be consider in the design of mite allergy vaccines.