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Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis

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Allergies, also known as hypersensitive reactions, that occurs when one’s immune system over reacts to a substance which otherwise is harmless. These substances are known as allergens, they could be house hold material, pets [1], cockroaches [2], dust, food items [3] like milk, nuts, sun and even water. Among all the substances that are known to cause an allergy, one of the most common is pollen. Pollen allergy is often known as hay fever by many people, but is referred to as “seasonal allergic rhinitis” by experts. This is basically an allergy to pollen that makes the nose to run in certain season [4].

Today allergic diseases such as bronchial asthma, allergic rhinitis , and atopic dermatitis are radically increasing all over the globe especially in the urban areas [5]. The epidemiological data from different cities in India shows that more than 30% of the population suffers from allergic ailment [6].

Aeroallergens (airborne allergens) are the major cause of respiratory allergic diseases like asthma, and allergic rhinitis. Aeroallergens include plant pollens, body covering of animals, fungi, insects, and domestic mites, are the most important factors that trigger the allergic diseases. Pollens are the male gametophyte of seed-bearing plants [5]. They resemble fine dust like particles that are carried by various means (air, water, insects etc.) to the pistil of the female gametophyte [7]. Pollen grains have been studied all around the globe as important aeroallergens and a cause of pollinosis (defined as the appearance of respiratory symptoms in response to inhalation of pollen to which one is sensitized [8]).

Recent advance in immunology and molecular biology has led to a better understanding of pollen allergies. This knowledge has provided explanations about the relationships between allergen exposures, allergic sensitivity and clinical observations such as allergic cross reactions with other pollens and even food [6].

  1. MONITORING AIRBONE ALLERGENS

Pollen allergies vary over different geographical areas along with environmental conditions like climatic factors, population and exposure. The fluctuation of pollen population annually, seasonally, and diurnally along with the degree of exposure provides important information to diagnose and treat the pollen allergy and therefore monitoring aerial pollen density is needed [9].

1.1 SAMPLING DEVICES

Sampling is done to observe the qualitative and quantitative prevalence of aeroallergens. Some of the devices used for sampling are mentioned briefly

1.1.1 Gravimetric Sampler

Are the earliest and crude devices that are dependent on gravity to deposit bioparticulates on a sticky surface. The Durham’s sampler is the commonly used sampler for this purpose. Here the microscopic slide is greased and mounted horizontally on a stand, with a roof, or rain shield, above. Petri dishes containing appropriate agar medium are also used for indoor and outdoor study of molds. Owing to the disadvantages of the gravimetric sampler to lose out on small spore and unable to give us the density of particles in a volume of air, the data acquired from gravimetric samplers are no longer considered reliable [10].

1.1.2 Volumetric Samplers

Such devices sample volumes of air passively on an adhesive coated stationary or rotating rods, over a given period of time and quantifies results as particles/m3/24 hours. Rotorod sampler model which is most widely used has a capture efficiency of about 85% to 90% for particles greater than 20µm but poor for particles less than 5µm in diameter [9, 10].

1.1.3 Suction samplers

These devices are designed in such a way that they suction a particular volume of air at a known velocity for chosen time durations on a trapping .Today there are several suction samplers available in the market like (I) Hirst spore trap, (II) Burkard seven days sampler, (III) Burkard personnel slide sampler (IV) Burkard petriplate sampler and (V) Anderson sampler [9, 10].

1.1.4 Filtration samplers

In these devices filters of fixed pore sizes are used to capture small particles which are very efficient in capturing particles small in size and in areas where the velocity of air is low[9] .

  1. ANALYSIS OF AIR SAMPLES
  2. TYPES OF POLLEN ALLERGENS
  3. SYMPTOMS OF POLLEN ALLERGY.
  4. DIAGNOSIS OF POLLEN ALLERGY. ARE THERE MODERN METHODS TO DIAGNOSE?
  5. WHAT CAUSES POLLEN ALLERGY?

Paul Portier & Charles Richet two French scientists used purified jellyfish toxin as a vaccine on dogs trying to identify the cause of the overreaction seen by bathers in the Mediterranean that were victims of jelly fish stings. The dogs were expected to be immunized by produce antibodies against toxin after the booster dose, but instead suffered from immediate vomiting, diarrhea and even death, hence they coined the term anaphylaxis which is the opposite of prophylaxis in Greek, to describe this overreaction. Richet & Portier were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1913 for their work on anaphylaxis which showed the ability of the immune system to respond to the inappropriate antigens [kuby].

  1. IMMUNOLOGICAL BASIS OF POLLEN ALLERGY.
  2. TREATMENT OF POLLEN ALLERGY. HOUSEHOLD TREATMENT. MEDICAL TREATMENT. MODERN METHODS OF TREATMENT.

TABLE27-3 Types of Aeroallergen Samplers

Type

Example(s)

Comments

Gravimetric

 

No longer adequate for research Smaller particles underrepresented

Durham

Particles/surface area (p/cm2)

Petrie dish

Colonies/plate

Volumetric

 

Particles/volume air (p/m3)

Impaction

   

Intermittent rotary

Rotorod

Overloads with continuous sampling Poor capture efficiency for particles ≤5 µm

Suction drum

Burkard Hirst-type trap Lanzoni Hirst-type trap

Needs wind orientation Better capture efficiency for particles ≤5 µm Capable of either 24-hour or weekly sampling

Suction slide

Personal Burkard sampler

Individual point exposure

Cascade

Andersen

Indoor or outdoor Segregates by size Allows culture for identification

Filtration

   

High-volume

Accu-Vol Air-Sentinel

Continuous high-volume sampling Microscopic and/or immunoassay

Automatic counters

KH3000

Misidentification of snow and sleet particles

Kowa

High maintenance

Shinyei NTT

Threshold minimal measurable concentration: ~50 grains/m3


BIBLIOGRAPHY

  1. http://www.asthmacenter.com/uploads/PET ALLERGY.pdf (referred on 16/1/14 at 16:50hrs )
  2. A. Pomés*, S. Wünschmann, J. Hindley, L.D. Vailes and M.D. Chapman. Cockroach Allergens: Function, Structure and Allergenicity (2007). Protein & Peptide Letters, 2007, 14, 960-969.
  3. http://www.nfsmi.org/documentlibraryfiles/PDF/20130227020259.pdf (referred on 16/1/14 at 16:01hrs)
  4. http://www.niaid.nih.gov/topics/allergicDiseases/Documents/PollenAllergyFactSheet.pdf (referred on 16/1/2014 at 15:44hrs).
  5. Mahram M, Barikani A, Nejatian N (2013) The Frequency of Common Allergens in Allergic Rhinitis among the Patients Referred to the Allergy Clinic of Qods Hospital in Qazvin during 2007-2010. J Aller Ther 4: 130. doi:10.4172/2155- 6121.1000130
  6. Singh AB, Kumar P: Aeroallergens in clinical practice of allergy in India. An overview. Ann Agric Environ Med 2003, 10, 131–136.
  7. http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/467883/pollen (referred on 17/1/14 at 22:36 hrs)
  8. J Bartra, J Sastre, A del Cuvillo, J Montoro, I Jáuregui, I Dávila, M Ferrer, J Mullol, A Valero, From Pollinosis to Digestive Allergy. J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 2009; Vol. 19, Suppl. 1: 3-10
  9. A.B. Singh and Pawan Kumar, Aerial Pollen Diversity in India and Their Clinical Significance in Allergic Diseases, Indian Journal of Clinical Biochemistry, 2004, 19 (2) 190-201
  10. https://www.inkling.com/read/middletons-allergy-adkinson-jr-8th/chapter-27/aeroallergen-sampling (referred on19/1/14 at 00:39 hrs)
  11. Kuby Immunology, Sixth Edition [Thomas J. Kindt, Barbara A. Osborne, Richard A. Goldsby

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