Study on the Prevention of Allergy in Children in Europe (SPACE): allergic sensitization in children at 1 year of age in a controlled trial of allergen avoidance from birth

G. Halmerbauer, Christian Gartner, Michael Schierl, Syed Hasan Arshad, Taraneh Dean, Dieter Y. Koller, W. Karmaus, Joachim Kuehr, Johannes Forster, Radvan Urbanek, Thomas Frischer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Several studies have demonstrated that early intervention may modulate the natural course of atopic disease. Our objective was to prevent sensitization to house-dust mite and food allergens, as well as the development of atopic symptoms during infancy, by the combination of an educational package and the use of mite allergen-impermeable mattress encasings. A multicentre European, population-based, randomized, controlled study of children at increased atopic risk [Study on the Prevention of Allergy in Children in Europe (SPACE)] was performed in five countries (Austria, Germany, Greece, the UK, and Lithuania), and included three cohorts – schoolchildren, toddlers, and newborns. We report on the newborn cohort. A total of 696 newborns were included from Austria, the UK, and Germany. Inclusion criteria were: a positive history of parental allergy; and a positive skin-prick test or specific immunoglobulin E (IgE) (IgE ≥ 1.43 kU/L) against at least one out of a panel of common aeroallergens in one or both parents. At 1 year of age, the overall sensitization rate against the tested allergens [dust-mite allergens: Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus and Dermatophagoides farinae (Der p and Der f)] and food allergens (egg, milk) in the prophylactic group was 6.21% vs. 10.67% in the control group. The prevalence of sensitization against Der p was 1.86% in the prophylactic group vs. 5% in the control group. In conclusion, we were able to demonstrate, in a group of newborns at risk for atopic diseases, that the sensitization rate to a panel of aero- and food allergens could be effectively decreased through the use of impermeable mattress encasings and the implementation of easy-to-perform preventive measures.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-54
Number of pages8
JournalPediatric Allergy and Immunology
Volume13
Issue numbers15
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2002

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