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Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 1994 Aug;104(4):385-9.

Comparison of Vespula germanica venoms obtained from different sources.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Carlos Haya Hospital, Malaga, Spain.


This study was carried out to compare the allergenic potency of Vespula germanica (VG) venoms extracted by different methods and commercially available venoms from Vespula species currently used for in vivo and in vitro studies including immunotherapy. Pure VG venom was used as the reference material. Protein content and enzymatic and allergenic properties of all venoms studied were determined by dye stain reagent, hyaluronidase and phospholipase A1B enzyme activities, and radioallergosorbent test inhibition studies, respectively. Radioallergosorbent test discs sensitized with commercial and pure VG venom were compared using specific IgE antibodies from subjects allergic to VG venom. The data obtained indicate that there were important differences in the allergenic potency between the Vespula species venoms employed for in vivo and/or in vitro assays, VG venom obtained by sac dissection, and pure VG venom. These results indicate that venoms from Vespula species used for in vitro and in vivo tests have a lower concentration of allergens and contain nonvenom proteins. These data should be taken into account when these vespid venoms are used for diagnostic purposes and also when evaluating immunotherapy studies.

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