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Immunol Allergy Clin North Am. 2004 Aug;24(3):373-97, v-vi.

Immune mechanism of drug hypersensitivity.

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  • 1Division of Allergology, Clinic for Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology/Allergology, Inselspital, University of Bern, 3010-Bern, Switzerland.


Drug hypersensitivity reactions can lead to a great variety of different diseases. The main cause is a specific interaction of antibodies or T cells with a drug. In addition to the hapten concept, some drugs can bind directly to T-cell receptors and stimulate them. Based on recent investigation on different exanthemas, an extended classification of the Gell and Coombs type IV reaction is proposed.

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