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Physiol Behav. 1994 May;55(5):823-5.

Pavlovian conditioning of nasal tryptase release in human subjects with allergic rhinitis.

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Department of Psychology, University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia.


The role of Pavlovian conditioning in humans with perennial allergic rhinitis was investigated using release of tryptase from sensitised mast cells as an indicator of allergic responsiveness. Challenge with house dust mite allergen (unconditioned stimulus) was paired with a drink of novel taste and appearance (conditioned stimulus) in a single conditioning trial. Upon reexposure to the conditioned stimulus alone, levels of mast cell tryptase released in subjects who had received both the novel drink and allergen challenge on the conditioning trial was significantly greater than subjects who had received either the drink or the allergen alone. The results support the involvement of the central nervous system in mast cell degranulation in allergic rhinitis in humans.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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