How exposures to biologics influence the induction and incidence of asthma

Darryl C. Zeldin, Peyton Eggleston, Martin Chapman, Giovanni Piedimonte, Harard Renz, David Peden

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


A number of environmental factors can affect the development and severity of allergy and asthma; however, it can be argued that the most significant inhaled agents that modulate the development of these conditions are biologics. Sensitization to environmental allergens is an important risk factor for the development of asthma. Innate immune responses are often mediated by receptors on mononuclear cells whose primary ligands arise from microorganisms. Many pathogens, especially viruses, target epithelial cells and affect the host immune response to those pathogens. The acquired immune response to an allergen is influenced by the nature of the innate immune system. Products of innate immune responses to microbes promote TH1-acquired responses. In the absence of TH1 responses, TH2 responses can dominate. Central to TH1/TH2 balance is the composition of contaminants that derive from microbes. In this review we examine the biology of the response to allergens, viruses, and bacterial products in the context of the development of allergy and asthma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)620-626
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental health perspectives
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Allergens
  • Allergy
  • Asthma
  • Endotoxin
  • Immunoglobulins
  • Leukotrienes
  • Neurotrophins
  • Respiratory virus
  • Tolerance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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