Characterization of allergen-specific T cell subsets in allergy: With a goal for improvement of allergen-specific immunotherapy

Dries Van Hemelen

    Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)

    1570 Downloads (Pure)


    To improve the therapeutic efficacy of allergen-specific immunotherapy (SIT), the underlying mechanisms should be understood in full detail. Allergen-specific T cell modulation may play a crucial role, in particular regarding for the induction of long term therapeutic effect. In the first part of this thesis we compared different methods to target and phenotype these T cells. Here the method consisting of 8 day cultures using CFSE appeared superior in the power to detect differences between allergic and non-allergic individuals. Therefore this methodology was used for the analysis of T cells in 2 different clinical trials in the second part of this Thesis. In the first trial the differences between Wasp-venom allergic patients with and without mastocytosis were studied during VIT. After 6 weeks of treatment we only observed a reduction in the allergy causing Th2 cells within the wasp-venom allergic patients not suffering from mastocytosis. The difference in this T cell modulation between the two treatment groups might explain the lack of long term symptom suppression seen in mastocytosis patients suffering from wasp-venom allergy. In a second clinical trial (VITAL), the adjuvant effects of Vitamin D3 was studied on grass-pollen SIT. Unfortunately the grass-pollen SIT did not result in a clinical improvement, precluding a definite conclusion on the potential adjuvant Vitamin D3.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Groningen
    • van Oosterhout, Antonius, Supervisor
    • Nawijn, Martijn, Co-supervisor
    • Oude Elberink, Hanneke, Co-supervisor
    Award date29-Feb-2016
    Place of Publication[Groningen]
    Print ISBNs978-94-6299-298-6
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

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