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Use of phage display technology to investigate allergen-antibody interactions.

Phage display is an advanced technology that can be used to characterize the interactions of antibody with antigen at the molecular level. It provides valuable data when applied to the investigation of IgE interaction with allergens. The aim of this rostrum article is to provide an explanation of the potential of phage display for increasing the understanding of allergen-IgE interaction, the discovery of diagnostic reagents, and the development of novel therapeutics for the treatment of allergic disease. The significance of initial studies that have applied phage display technology in allergy research will be highlighted. Phage display has been used to clone human IgE to timothy grass pollen allergen Phl p 5, to characterize the epitopes for murine and human antibodies to a birch pollen allergen Bet v 1, and to elucidate the epitopes of a murine mAb to the house dust mite allergen Der p 1. The technology has identified peptides that functionally mimic sites of human IgE constant domains and that were used to raise antiserum for blocking binding of IgE to the FcepsilonRI on basophils and subsequent release of histamine. Phage display has also been used to characterize novel peanut and fungal allergens. The method has been used to increase our understanding of the molecular basis of allergen-IgE interactions and to develop clinically relevant reagents with the pharmacologic potential to block the effector phase of allergic reactions. Many advances from these early studies are likely as phage display technology evolves and allergists gain expertise in its research applications.[1]


  1. Use of phage display technology to investigate allergen-antibody interactions. Davies, J.M., O'hehir, R.E., Suphioglu, C. J. Allergy Clin. Immunol. (2000) [Pubmed]
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