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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2004 May;113(5):910-5.

Mouse allergen exposure and mouse skin test sensitivity in suburban, middle-class children with asthma.

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Department of Pediatrics, Johns Hopkins University, Johns Hopkins Hospital, CMSC 1102, 600 N. Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21287, USA.



Exposure to mouse allergen is prevalent in inner-city homes and is associated with an increased risk of mouse skin test sensitivity in inner-city children with asthma.


To determine the distribution of mouse allergen and its relationship to mouse skin test sensitivity in a primarily suburban, middle-class population of asthmatic children.


Children with asthma, 6 to 17 years old, were recruited from 3 pediatric practices located in counties surrounding the city of Baltimore and from 1 practice located within the city limits. Participants underwent skin prick testing and completed a baseline questionnaire. Their homes were inspected, and settled dust samples were collected for allergen analysis.


Two hundred fifty-seven of 335 (76.7%) participants resided outside the city, and 53.7% had annual incomes >$50,000. Mouse allergen was detected in 74.9% of bedrooms, and 13.1% were sensitized to mouse. Lower maternal education (odds ratio [OR], 2.17; 95% CI, 1.28-3.67), city residence (OR, 5.39; 95% CI, 2.23-13.02), and higher bedroom cockroach allergen levels (OR, 9.61; 95% CI, 1.17-79.03) were independent predictors of high bedroom mouse allergen. The risk of mouse skin test sensitivity increased with increasing bedroom Mus m 1 exposure (OR, 1.43; 95% CI, 1.04-1.96, with each increase in quartile), and dog skin test sensitivity was a strong independent predictor of mouse skin test sensitivity (OR, 7.23; 95% CI, 3.03-17.22).


Mouse allergen exposure is common among suburban, middle-class asthmatic children. Increasing bedroom levels of Mus m 1 and dog skin test sensitivity are risk factors for mouse skin test sensitivity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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