Occupational Asthma Reference

Elms J, Fishwick D, Robinson E, Burge S, Huggins V, Barber C, Williams N, Curran A, Specific IgE to colophony?, Occup Med, 2005;55:234-237,

Keywords:

Known Authors

Joanne Harris-Roberts (nee Elms), HSL, Buxton, UK Joanne Harris-Roberts (nee Elms)

Andrew Curran, HSL, Sheffield, UK Andrew Curran

David Fishwick, Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield, UK David Fishwick

Sherwood Burge, Oasys Sherwood Burge

Vicky Moore, Oasys Vicky Moore

Nerys Williams, Department of Work and Pensions Nerys Williams

Chris Barber, Health and Safety Laboratories, Buxton Chris Barber

Ed Robinson, Health and Safety Laboratories, Buxton, UK Ed Robinson

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Abstract

Background
Colophony (rosin) is a natural product obtained from coniferous trees. It is used in a diverse range of products such as adhesives, ink, paints and soldering fluxes. Some workers exposed to colophony during soldering can develop occupational asthma; at present, no specific IgE test is available to assess sensitization to colophony.

Methods
Serum samples were obtained from exposed symptomatic individuals (n=7), some with a likely diagnosis of occupational asthma, exposed asymptomatic individuals (n=10) and unexposed individuals (n=11). Serum was tested for specific IgE antibodies against a protein extract produced following in vitro challenge of mono-mac-6 cells with colophony extract.

Results
Serum from exposed symptomatic individuals showed increased binding of specific IgE antibodies to a range of colophony–cell protein conjugates [29% (2/7) of samples tested when cut-off >0.1 or 86% (6/7) of samples tested when cut-off >0%] compared with both the exposed asymptomatic [0% when cut-off >0.1, or 20% when cut-off >0% (2/10)] and the non-exposed control populations [0% when cut-off >0.1, or 27% when cut-off >0% (3/11)].

Conclusions
This novel approach for the production of conjugates to assess sensitization to colophony was able to detect specific IgE in colophony-exposed workers with a likely diagnosis of occupational asthma.

Plain text: Background Colophony (rosin) is a natural product obtained from coniferous trees. It is used in a diverse range of products such as adhesives, ink, paints and soldering fluxes. Some workers exposed to colophony during soldering can develop occupational asthma; at present, no specific IgE test is available to assess sensitization to colophony. Methods Serum samples were obtained from exposed symptomatic individuals (n=7), some with a likely diagnosis of occupational asthma, exposed asymptomatic individuals (n=10) and unexposed individuals (n=11). Serum was tested for specific IgE antibodies against a protein extract produced following in vitro challenge of mono-mac-6 cells with colophony extract. Results Serum from exposed symptomatic individuals showed increased binding of specific IgE antibodies to a range of colophony-cell protein conjugates [29% (2/7) of samples tested when cut-off >0.1 or 86% (6/7) of samples tested when cut-off >0%] compared with both the exposed asymptomatic [0% when cut-off >0.1, or 20% when cut-off >0% (2/10)] and the non-exposed control populations [0% when cut-off >0.1, or 27% when cut-off >0% (3/11)]. Conclusions This novel approach for the production of conjugates to assess sensitization to colophony was able to detect specific IgE in colophony-exposed workers with a likely diagnosis of occupational asthma.

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Associated Questions

Registered users of this website have associated this reference with the following questions. This association is not a part of the BOHRF occupational asthma guidelines.

What are the sensitivity and the specificity of specific IgE testing in the diagnosis of validated cases of occupational asthma?
burgeps provides some evidence for specific IgE to colophony adducts for the first time. No evidence for diagnostic sensitivity/specificity against specific challenge

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