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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1997 Jul;100(1):122-9.

Absorption and distribution kinetics of the major Parietaria judaica allergen (Par j 1) administered by noninjectable routes in healthy human beings.

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Allergy and Clinical Immunology Service, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Genoa, Italy.



The clinical effectiveness of noninjectable routes for specific immunotherapy has been demonstrated in many studies, but no data are available on the kinetics of allergens administered by these routes. Therefore we studied the kinetics of the radiolabeled purified major Parietaria judaica allergen (Par j 1) after sublingual, oral, and intranasal administration to healthy human beings.


After tracer administration (10 to 12.5 microg of Par j 1 labeled with iodine 123) to nonallergic volunteers, scintigraphic images were recorded at various times. Blood samples were also obtained at serial intervals to evaluate the absorption and distribution of radioactivity in plasma and to identify circulating radioactive species by molecular exclusion gel chromatography.


When the sublingual route was used, no circulating radioactivity was detected until the tracer was kept under the tongue. The labeled allergen was rapidly degraded and absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract after swallowing. Plasma radioactivity peaked at about 1.5 to 3 hours and was mostly represented by free radioiodine and small radiolabeled peptides. Some activity not caused by free 123I remained associated with the oral mucosa up to 18 to 20 hours after administration. When the oral route was used, the results were similar to those observed after swallowing the sublingually administered allergen but without any persistence of the tracer in the mouth. When the intranasal route was used, the pattern of plasma radioactivity mimicked that of the sublingual and oral routes, with absorption of activity from the radiolabeled allergen occurring in the gastrointestinal tract after transport to the pharynx by mucociliary clearance. A relevant fraction of the tracer was retained on the nasal mucosa up to 48 hours after administration.


The data in this study provide the first experimental basis for exploring the in vivo kinetics of allergen administered through noninjectable routes for specific immunotherapy in human beings.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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