Novel vaccines for allergen-specific immunotherapy

Oluwatoyin Akinfenwa, Azahara Rodríguez-Domínguez, Susanne Vrtala, Rudolf Valenta, Raffaela Campana

Research output: Journal article (peer-reviewed)Journal article

16 Citations (Scopus)


PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Allergen-specific immunotherapy (AIT) is a highly economic, effective and disease-modifying form of allergy treatment but requires accurate prescription and monitoring. New molecular approaches are currently under development to improve AIT by reducing treatment-related side effects, cumbersome protocols and patients' compliance. We review the current advances regarding refined diagnosis for prescription and monitoring of AIT and the development of novel molecular vaccines for AIT. Finally, we discuss prophylactic application of AIT.

RECENT FINDINGS: There is evidence that molecular allergy diagnosis not only assists in the prescription and monitoring of AIT but also allows a refined selection of patients to increase the likelihood of treatment success. New data regarding the effects of AIT treatment with traditional allergen extracts by alternative routes have become available. Experimental approaches for AIT, such as virus-like particles and cell-based treatments have been described. New results from clinical trials performed with recombinant hypoallergens and passive immunization with allergen-specific antibodies highlight the importance of allergen-specific IgG antibodies for the effect of AIT and indicate opportunities for preventive allergen-specific vaccination.

SUMMARY: Molecular allergy diagnosis is useful for the prescription and monitoring of AIT and may improve the success of AIT. Results with molecular allergy vaccines and by passive immunization with allergen-specific IgG antibodies indicate the importance of allergen-specific IgG capable of blocking allergen recognition by IgE and IgE-mediated allergic inflammation as important mechanism for the success of AIT. New molecular vaccines may pave the road towards prophylactic allergen-specific vaccination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-99
Number of pages14
JournalCurrent Opinion in Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 01 Feb 2021


  • Allergens/administration & dosage
  • Desensitization, Immunologic/adverse effects
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Immunologic
  • Humans
  • Hypersensitivity/immunology
  • Immunogenicity, Vaccine
  • Seasons
  • Secondary Prevention/methods
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vaccination/methods
  • Vaccines, Synthetic/administration & dosage
  • allergy prophylaxis
  • allergen
  • molecular allergy diagnosis
  • allergy
  • allergy vaccines
  • modified allergen molecules
  • allergen-specific immunotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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