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Lancet. 1990 Oct 13;336(8720):904-6.

Preliminary report: complement activation in wasp-sting anaphylaxis.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Eemland Hospital, Amersfoort, The Netherlands.


The generation of the anaphylatoxin C3a was measured after a wasp-sting challenge in eight patients with previous anaphylactic reactions to wasp stings. Whereas there was no change in C3a in one patient who showed no reaction and only a slight rise in three patients with mild reactions, C3a rose substantially in the four patients with severe anaphylactic reactions. This complement activation is the first in-vitro variable which correlates with the severity of wasp-sting anaphylactic reactions. A role for complement activation in the pathophysiology of wasp-sting anaphylaxis is therefore suggested.

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