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Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 1996 Nov;111(3):262-7.

Specific IgE and IgG4 immune responses to tetanus and diphtheria toxoid in atopic and nonatopic children during the first two years of life.

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University Children's Hospital, Virchow-Clinic Berlin, Germany.



In order to investigate, whether atopic and nonatopic children show differences in their specific IgE and IgG4 immune responses to tetanus (T) and diphtheria (D) antigens, we studied 538 children who had been followed from birth on and from whom records had been kept of all immunizations.


The prevalence of eczema and asthma was registered at regular intervals and the cumulative incidence of symptoms was determined at 24 months of age. Total serum IgE and specific IgE to a panel of nine allergens as well as T- and D-specific IgE and IgG4 were determined from the 24-months blood samples.


Our results show that both atopic and nonatopic children are capable of mounting high levels of toxoid-specific IgE antibody responses. Children with cord blood IgE > 0.9 kU/1, serum IgE 10-100 kU/1 and > 100 kU/1 and at least one sensitization to an allergen at 24 months of age have significantly higher IgE responses to T and D (p < 0.001). In contrast, specific IgG4 antibody concentrations to T and D were not significantly different in children with elevated total IgE levels at 24 months. No differences in subgroups of children with or without early symptoms of atopy were observed.


Our data indicate that IgE responses to toxoids such as T and D are not limited to infants with clinical manifestations of atopy in the first 2 years of life but are related to immunological parameters of atopy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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