What Characterizes House Dust Mite Sensitive Individuals in a House Dust Mite Free Community in Reykjavik, Iceland?

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<b>Background:</b> Previous studies show that 6-9% of young adults in Reykjavik are sensitised to the house dust mite (HDM) <i>Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus</i> (<i>D. pteronyssinus</i>). However, only negligible amounts of HDM and HDM allergens were detected in their homes. The study investigates what characterizes these individuals.<br> <b>Methods:</b> We investigated all participants in the European Community Respiratory Health Surveys I and II (ECRHS I and II) with <i>D. pteronyssinus</i> specific IgE, in the years 1991-92. A grass positive but <i>D. pteronyssinus</i> negative control group was recruited from the same cohort. A detailed questionnaire was administered and the specific IgE (Pharmacia CAP system) against six <i>D. pteronyssinus</i> cross-reactive allergens was measured.<br> <b>Results:</b> Of 601 ECRHS I participants with available IgE results, 88% returned for ECRHS II, 8.4 years later. Of 49 individuals with <i>D. pteronyssinus</i> specific IgE in ECRHS I, 24 had become negative in ECRHS II. Compared with controls, HDM sensitive subjects were more often men who had lived on farms or kept aquaria fish in childhood. Of those with specific IgE against <i>D. pteronyssinus</i> in ECRHS I and II, 75% had detectable IgE antibodies (≥0.35kU/l) to cross-reactive allergens compared with none in the control group (<i>p</i> < 0.0001): <i>Lepidoglyphus destructor</i> (<i>L. destructor</i>) (67%), shrimp (58%), cockroach (33%), mosquito (17%), tropomyosin (17%) and blood worm (4%).<br> <b>Conclusions:</b> Icelanders with specific IgE to <i>D. pteronyssinus</i> are more often men who spent time on farms in childhood and today have high prevalence of IgE antibodies cross-reactive to <i>D. pteronyssinus</i>.<br>


  • Allergol. Int.  

    Allergol. Int. 56(1), 51-56, 2007-03-01 

    Japanese Society of Allergology

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