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Trends Immunol. 2011 Sep;32(9):402-11. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2011 Jul 23.

Orchestrating house dust mite-associated allergy in the lung.

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Leukocyte Biology Section, National Heart and Lung Institute, Faculty of Medicine, Imperial College London, SW7 2AZ, UK.


House dust mites (HDM; Dermatophagoides sp.) are one of the commonest aeroallergens worldwide and up to 85% of asthmatics are typically HDM allergic. Allergenicity is associated both with the mites themselves and with ligands derived from mite-associated bacterial and fungal products. Murine models of allergic airways disease for asthma research have recently switched from the use of surrogate allergen ovalbumin together with adjuvant to use of the HDM extract. This has accelerated understanding of how adaptive and innate immunity generate downstream pathology. We review the myriad ways in which HDM allergic responses are orchestrated. Understanding the molecular pathways that elicit HDM-associated pathology is likely to reveal novel targets for therapeutic intervention.

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