Researchers say vaccine against dog allergies is ‘within grasp’

Researchers at Osaka Prefectural University, Japan, have identified for the first time candidates to try to treat people for canine allergies by artificially stimulating immune tolerance to those parts of the molecules that make up dog allergens, creating a “potential dog allergy vaccine.”

Researchers have said that dog allergies are a common disease worldwide and are on the rise. Scientists have been able to identify seven different types of canine allergens, molecules or molecular structures that bind to an antibody and produce an unusually strong immune response that is usually harmless, over the years. These seven are called the familiar Canis Allergens 1 to 7. Of the seven, only one, Can f 1, is responsible for the majority (50-75%) of reactions in people allergic to dogs. Allergens are found in the tissues of dogs’ tongue, salivary glands, and skin.

The results were published in the Journal of the Federation of European Biochemical Societies on October 26.

Researchers have yet to identify the specific parts of antigens that the immune system recognizes and stimulate or identify an immune response (epipers or antigen determinants) that bind to a specific antigen receptor on the surface of the immune system’s antibodies like a jigsaw puzzle piece The researchers said fits the specific shape of a jigsaw puzzle piece, the researchers said. other.

Antibodies, also known as immunoglobulins, come in five different classes, and the IgE analogue, found only in mammals, plays a major role in allergies and allergic diseases.

Recently, there has been an intense effort aimed at developing epitope-focused vaccines — in this case, a canine allergy vaccine, the researchers said.

“We want to be able to deliver small doses of these epitopes to the immune system to be trained to handle, similar to the principle behind any vaccine,” Takashi Inoue, who specializes in allergy research, said in a statement. “But we can’t do that without first identifying Can f 1’s IgE epitope.”

So the researchers used X-ray crystallography (in which X-ray diffraction is analyzed through a material to determine its “crystalline” structure) to determine the structure of the Can f 1 protein as a whole – the first time this has ever been done.

They found that at first glance the protein’s folding pattern is very similar to three other Can f allergens. However, the locations of the surface electric charges were quite different, which in turn indicates a series of “residues” that are good candidates for the IgE sticky ring.

Using this basic data, more experimental work needs to be done to narrow down the candidates, but the results point to the development of an anti-allergen vaccine for Can f 1 — a vaccine against canine allergy — the researchers said.

The production of an “anti-allergy vaccine” using such epitopes would not only be the first in the world for canine allergies but it is rare for any allergic reaction. If the researchers’ work is indeed used to develop a vaccine against canine allergies, the principles behind it could be used much more broadly against various allergies.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported earlier this year that Purina was developing a cat food that could help treat cat allergies, reducing the protein most allergic people react to by 47% after three weeks. Healthline reported that in 2019, a Swiss company was developing a vaccine focused on cat allergies that had been given to the animal.

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