Background Due to reduced allergic potency, hypoallergenic variants have been suggested as safer and potentially more efficacious alternative to the corresponding wild-type allergens in allergen-specific immunotherapy. Here, we aimed at investigating the efficacy of recombinant Bet v 1B2, a hypoallergenic folding variant of Bet v 1, in epicutaneous immunotherapy to suppress asthmatic features using a murine model of birch pollen allergy. Methods and Results Before, or after sensitization with rBet v 1 plus ALUMW and intranasal challenges with birch pollen extract, BALB/c mice received epicutaneous immunization (EPI) with rBet v 1, or rBet v 1B2 on their depilated back. Prophylactic EPI with rBet v 1B2, but not with rBet v 1, suppressed serum levels of Bet v 1-specific IgE antibodies and reduced the number of eosinophils and the concentrations of Th2 cytokines in bronchoalveolar lavage. In an established allergic condition, serum levels of Bet v 1-specific IgE antibodies were similar between PBS-treated control mice and EPI-treated mice. However, therapeutic EPI with rBet v 1B2, but not with rBet v 1, significantly suppressed the development of airway inflammation and lung function impairment. Conclusion This study is the first to show the effect of therapeutic EPI with a recombinant form of a hypoallergenic folding variant on the suppression of asthmatic features. Our results suggest that rBet v 1B2 along with its reduced IgE-binding capacity could be a preferred therapeutic allergen than wild-type rBet v 1 in epicutaneous immunotherapy of birch pollen-induced allergic asthma, in particular due to a lower risk of allergic side effect.
|Number of pages
|Allergy: European Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
|Published - 2015 Dec 1
- birch pollen allergy
- epicutaneous immunization