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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1996 Jan;97(1 Pt 1):95-103.

Induction of IgE antibodies with predefined specificity in rhesus monkeys with recombinant birch pollen allergens, Bet v 1 and Bet v 2.

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  • 1Institute of Genetics, University of Salzburg, Austria.



Recombinant birch pollen allergens Bet v 1 and Bet v 2 (birch profilin) have been characterized in vitro previously.


To establish a close-to-man model of type I allergy, recombinant birch pollen allergens were injected into rhesus monkeys.


The allergens were expressed in Escherichia coli, purified to homogeneity and injected into rhesus monkeys with aluminium hydroxide as adjuvans. The development of type I allergy was monitored by measurement of specific IgE, in vitro histamine release tests, cellular proliferation assays, skin testing, and bronchial provocation tests.


Immunized rhesus monkeys displayed symptoms of type I allergy comparable to those of allergic patients, and cross-reactivity of IgE antibodies with Bet v 1 and Bet v 2 homologous allergens was observed. Systemic application of corticosteroids during secondary immunizations suppressed specific antibody responses.


Recombinant birch pollen allergens (Bet v 1 and Bet v 2) were effective to establish a close-to-man model of natural type I allergy in rhesus monkeys, allowing study of specific IgE regulation in vivo.

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