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Keywords:

  • Biomarker research;
  • evidence-based medicine;
  • future immunotherapy;
  • personalised medicine;
  • primary prevention

To cite this article: Sørensen P. The future of specific immunotherapy: strategies and challenges for the next generation of allergy vaccines. Allergy 2011; 66 (Suppl. 95): 63–65.

Abstract

The use of specific immunotherapy (SIT) for allergic disorders has recently been extended by introduction of a convenient, tablet-based, disease-modifying vaccine against grass pollen allergy. Allergy immunotherapy tablet (AIT) programmes targeting house dust mite and other allergies are currently in late-phase development. Next-generation allergy vaccines can have optimised potency and onset of action without compromising safety or convenience. Key to achieving these objectives is a combination of evidence-based mode-of-action studies and biomarker-centric translational research approaches. This will rely on using biobank and bioinformatics resources for multi-omic characterisations of the ‘immunome’ of allergic disease. Other important areas are ongoing paediatric trials and long-term studies in adults for further defining the potential role of SIT in allergic disease and primary prevention of asthma. Finally, combining cellular- and serological-based assays, and developments in targeted delivery platforms and component-resolved diagnostics will lead to increased ability to stratify patients, with more personalised diagnosis and treatment.