Deeper into the rabbit hole we go. The following links are what we consider to be hardcore 'gloves off' research notes. All content is referenced correctly. Please visit the disclaimer page for more information.
Three events appear to work together to create a risk of hospitalisation for asthmatics of all ages. They involve house dust mites and viral infections.
Within the text of the book referenced below there is an excellent review of the activities of the major house dust mite allergen Der p1. This review is headed: 'Proteases Are Major Allergens derived from Various Organisms', page 48 to 52. The chapter clearly describes the destructive pathways of which Der p1 is capable
This study investigates how some mite allergic adults and children, exposed to H influenzae endotoxins, can in tandem produce antigen/allergen specific IgG4. An antibody associated with protection or in short term sensitisation and anaphylactic reactions.
'Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus' is a tiny nest dwelling mite that scavenges on discarded skin scales in damp, dark environments. It lives in colonies and is a potent and major cause of human allergy and allergic disease worldwide.
The risk of developing serious eye conditions during the winter months or in the pollen season is increased by continuous exposure to allergens associated with allergic disease and conjunctivitis. How the eye protects itself is described in this short article. Avoidance of allergens, such as from pollens or house dust mites HDM enzymes is recommended to reduce the risk of irritation.
Once asthma is established, chronic inflammation in the lungs is a critical feature of the disease. Inflammation can be made worse by inhaling allergens or irritants (such as smoke, ozone, diesel particles) or from a respiratory viral infection.
The human lung with a surface area of 40-120 m2 is constantly exposed to between 10,000 and 20,000 liters of ambient air daily. Within this air intake are a wide range of particles, some biological, such as pollens or mite droppings and some non-biological such as carbon or metals from diesel exhaust.
Lungs become agitated and ultra-sensitive for a time following damage from respiratory viral infections, excessive cigarette smoke or ozone inhalation.
Although house dust mite (HDM) allergens are not generally associated with an IgE systemic anaphylaxis reaction, HDM allergic asthma is consider a major risk factor for the condition. Indeed, in most fatalities due to anaphylaxis, asthma is present. A major cause of asthma around the world is exposure to house dust mites.
This article is by Dr Matthew J Colloff author of the recently published, Dust Mites'. In the paragraph below Dr Colloff describes how the enzymatic activity of major mite allergens can impact on an atopic (prone to an IgE response) immune system.
A newly found cell points the way towards explaining why dust mites and hookworms can be considered the same thing by the human immune system. Exposure to either animal can result in an assault on lungs and asthma. For hookworms the journey into the lungs is an important part of their life cycle. For scavenging dust mites, digestive enzymes found in their droppings cause lung cell death and a breach in defenses. For some allergy patients these pests may be considered equal and unwanted parasites, and react appropriately.
According to a recent review of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) 25% to 45% of patients diagnosed with the disease have never smoked. Yet, almost all of the clinical trials designed to investigate drug remedies for COPD recruit patients who smoke. This throws doubt over the condition itself and pharmacological remedies that may be considered.
The numbers of specific T cell lymphocytes have had an important addition - the Th17 regulator. The expanding T cell lymphocyte family include; Th1, aimed at intracellular pathogens such as viral infections, Th2 offers some protection against worms and is associated with allergy, Th 3 a regulator and now Th17 a regulator that can also act to help clear up fungi and bacterial infection through the activation of neutrophils. Neutrophil activity in asthma can exist along side 'allergic IgE' asthma.
A description of the critical roles that dendritic cells (DC) play as sentinels in directing immune responses to environmental exposure in both mouse and human lungs. How the cells respond to house dust mite products is a topic of interest within the paper. It is noted that IgE levels [dust mite] can impair DC antiviral responses, possibly causing virus-induced wheezing in atopic patients.
New research describes how signalling pathways in airway epithelial cells drive mucus production in asthma after stimuli from environmental triggers such as allergens (i.e. house dust mites), viruses or cigarette smoke. The same pathway was found to be responsible for activating excessive mucus in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
House dust is a complex mixture containing many different foreign proteins, as well as a variety of arthropods, nematodes, bacteria, fungi and human skin scales. When Voorhorst and Spieksma established that dust mites were the most important source of allergens in house dust in the Netherlands, they also developed the technique for growing quantities of mites. This made it possible to purify a major allergen (Der p 1) to measure the airborne exposure and to study the immune response.'
This is the introduction to an article by Dr Thomas A E Platts-Mills. The main body of the text follows.