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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1985 May;75(5):611-3.

Allergens in Hymenoptera venom XV: The immunologic basis of vespid venom cross-reactivity.


RAST-inhibition studies were performed by use of whole venom sac extracts to inhibit binding to purified venom allergens from various vespid wasps. Immunodiffusion studies were also performed with rabbit antisera raised against purified venom proteins. Immunologic cross-reactivity was demonstrated among the hyaluronidases, phospholipases, and antigen 5 s from both subgenera of yellow jackets, white-faced hornets, and paper wasps. The paper wasp hyaluronidase and antigen 5 were less related to those of the other three species than those of yellow jackets and hornets. It appears that immunologic cross-reactivity is the major mechanism of multiple allergic sensitivity to vespid venoms. Therapy with only the primary venom should be sufficient to protect against reactions from cross-reacting venoms.

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