Food allergy development linked to skin exposure

November 03, 2014

Food allergies are on the rise in the U.S. and other developed countries. In patients, food allergies appear as a variety of symptoms, ranging from mild skin inflammation to severe asthma. Recent studies suggest that contact between inflamed skin and food proteins may trigger food allergy development. A new study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation provides a link between skin sensitization, gastrointestinal inflammation, and food allergy. Using a mouse model, Steven Ziegler and colleagues at the Benaroya Research Institute found that skin exposure to a combination of food antigen (peanut or egg proteins) and the pro-inflammatory molecule thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) results in food allergy. Dermal application of TSLP and antigen resulted in a severe allergic reaction, including diarrhea and anaphylaxis, when mice ingested the antigen. Skin sensitization to antigen required TSLP. However, development of allergic responses in the gut required IL-25, a protein that regulates the intestinal immune response. Interestingly, mice given antigen orally prior to skin sensitization did not develop an allergic response. The results from this study provide a mouse model for skin-induced food allergy development that could be used to test potential therapeutic interventions.
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This research was supported by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health.

TITLE:

Thymic stromal lymphopoietin-mediated epicutaneous inflammation promotes acute diarrhea and anaphylaxis

AUTHOR CONTACT:

Steven Ziegler
Benaroya Research Institute, Seattle, WA, USA
Phone: (206) 287-5657; Fax: (206) 342-6572; E-mail: sziegler@benaroyaresearch.org

View this article at: http://www.jci.org/articles/view/77798?key=4815bf4594e9535c0a88

JCI Journals

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