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Omalizumab therapy in atopic dermatitis: depletion of IgE does not improve the clinical course - a randomized, placebo-controlled and double blind pilot study.

Author(s): Heil PM, Maurer D, Klein B, Hultsch T, Stingl G

Affiliation(s): Division of Immunology, Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Department of Dermatology, Medical University of Vienna, Austria. peter.heil@meduniwien.ac.at

Publication date & source: 2010-12, J Dtsch Dermatol Ges., 8(12):990-8.

Publication type: Randomized Controlled Trial

BACKGROUND: Our understanding of the pathogenic role of IgE in atopic dermatitis is incomplete. We asked whether blocking free IgE would alter the course of the disease. PATIENTS AND METHODS: We administered either omalizumab, a humanized monoclonal mouse antibody against IgE, or placebo subcutaneously for 16 weeks to 20 atopic dermatitis patients and measured immunological and clinical disease parameters. RESULTS: Omalizumab (I) reduced free serum IgE, (II) lowered surface IgE and FcvarepsilonRI expression on different peripheral blood mononuclear cells, (III) reduced the saturation of FcvarepsilonRI with IgE, (IV) increased the number of free FcvarepsilonRI and (V) lowered the number of IgE+, but not of FcvarepsilonRI+ cells in skin. The in vivo relevance of these results is evidenced by the increase in the threshold allergen concentration required to give a type I hypersensitivity reaction in the titrated skin test. While not significantly altering the clinical disease parameters, omalizumab treatment led to an improvement of the atopy patch test results in single patients, i.e. an eczematous reaction upon epicutaneous allergen challenge. CONCLUSIONS: The interference with immediate and delayed type skin tests may imply that a therapeutic benefit of omalizumab treatment, if present at all, would be seen in patients with acute rather than chronic forms of the disease. (c) The Authors * Journal compilation (c) Blackwell Verlag GmbH, Berlin.

Page last updated: 2011-12-09

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