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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Salsola pollen as a predominant cause of respiratory allergies in Kuwait.

BACKGROUND: Respiratory allergies are common in Kuwait, and the role of certain allergens has been previously documented. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the results of skin prick tests to a range of allergens that were considered relevant to the vegetation surveys and aerobiological studies performed in Kuwait. METHOD: New patients attending our center during August 2002 to February 2003 with asthma or allergic rhinitis underwent skin prick tests to a battery of allergens. RESULTS: A total of 451 patients aged 5 to 60 years (mean age, 29.5 years) were tested. Of these patients, 403 (89.4%) had a positive test result to at least one allergen and were considered allergic. A total of 76.7% of the allergic patients had a positive reaction to Salsola pollen, with a mean wheal diameter of 8.25 mm (median, 8 mm). Chenopodium album was positive in 57.6% and Bermuda grass was positive in 38.2% of the allergic cases. Indoor allergens seemed to play a lesser role than pollens: Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus was positive in only 37.5%, and American and German cockroaches were positive in 33.2% and 22.3%, respectively. All the allergens other than Salsola elicited a mean wheal diameter of less than 6.25 mm (median, < or = 6 mm). CONCLUSIONS: Indoor allergens seem to play a lesser role in respiratory allergies in Kuwait. Most allergic patients become sensitized to pollens; the strongest and most frequent reaction is from Salsola pollen. Salsola imbricata is found growing extensively in most areas of the country, flowering mainly in autumn, when the most common pollen is of the Chenopod-Amaranth type and when most patients with seasonal allergic rhinitis become symptomatic.[1]


  1. Salsola pollen as a predominant cause of respiratory allergies in Kuwait. Al-Dowaisan, A., Fakim, N., Khan, M.R., Arifhodzic, N., Panicker, R., Hanoon, A., Khan, I. Ann. Allergy Asthma Immunol. (2004) [Pubmed]
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