Presence and characterization of sensitization to staphylococcal enterotoxins in patients with allergic rhinitis

M. Okano, T. Takishita, T. Yamamoto, H. Hattori, Y. Yamashita, S. Nishioka, T. Ogawa, K. Nishizaki

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27 Citations (Scopus)


Exotoxins derived from Staphylococcus aureus appear to be involved in the pathogenesis of allergic diseases, especially atopic dermatitis (AD). However, little is known about sensitization to enterotoxins in cases of respiratory allergies. Because the nasal cavity is a primary site of colonization by S. aureus, we sought to determine the prevalence and role of serum immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies against staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA) and SEB in patients with allergic rhinitis (AR). The presence of SEA- and SEB-specific IgE was determined in 40 patients with AR and 16 healthy control subjects. In the rhinitis group, nasal symptom score, total serum IgE, sensitization to other inhaled allergens and the presence of sinusitis were determined. Twenty-five percent of patients with AR were sensitized to SEA/SEB whereas 6.3% of controls were sensitized to the toxins. Sensitization to SEB was predominant relative to SEA. There were no significant differences in the severity of nasal symptoms and complications of other allergic diseases including AD and bronchial asthma, between patients with or without sensitization to SEA/SEB. However, patients sensitized to these toxins were likely to show increased total serum IgE and polyvalent sensitization, suggesting that exposure and subsequent sensitization to SEA/SEB may be involved in polyvalent sensitization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-421
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Rhinology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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