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Allergy. 1987 Feb;42(2):109-16.

Results of biological standardization with standardized allergen preparations.


The aim of biological standardization (BS) is to equilibrate the activity (potency) of allergen extracts from different source materials. This was done by performing skin prick tests (SPT) on patients who were sensitive to one of the following 10 allergens: Birch, alder, hazel, timothy, rye grass, velvet grass, cultivated rye, mugwort, D. farinae and Cladosporium herbarum. Patient sensitivity varied within a range of three to four powers of ten for each allergen investigated. The weal size in each patient corresponding to that elicited by histamine 1 mg/ml was calculated using the model log (mean weal diameter) = a + b log (concentration). The correlation coefficients of the regression lines of the allergen dose response relationship were found to be greater than 0.85 in most cases. The median slope for all extracts was 0.24. The slope for Cladosporium was significantly steeper than that for pollens. The amount of material in microgram dry weight (d.w./ml) equal to 1000 biological units/ml (BU/ml) varied within a factor of three between species for all tested purified allergen preparations but Cladosporium. For Cladosporium, about 30 times more material was needed than for D. farinae. When using crude rather than purified material, it was necessary to use five to ten times more to elicit a reaction corresponding to 1000 BU/ml, but the difference was significant only for Cladosporium. The narrow range of allergen concentrations used by us as well as other investigators does not assure positive skin prick test results in all patients with clinical symptoms due to the allergen in question. Skin prick testing should therefore be done over a wide range of concentrations to improve the methods for BS.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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