Genetic Environmental Factors in Clinical Allergy was first published in 1990. In 1979, the Task Force on Asthma and the Other Allergic Diseases, organized by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, estimated (conservatively) that 35 million residents of the United States suffered from asthma and other serious allergies, spending “well in excess of $1 billion each year for physicians’ services, drugs, and hospital and nursing care.” Asthma deaths in the U.S. were estimated to be between 2,000 and 4,000 annually; further deaths were shown to result from severe allergic reaction to insect stings, foods, and certain drugs. An understanding of the genetic and environmental factors that determine atopic allergy, which includes diseases such as hay fever, asthma, atopic dermatitis (eczema), and certain types of food intolerance, is vital to the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of this multifaceted disease. In this volume, David G. Marsh and Malcolm N. Blumenthal have assembled the work of leading experts to address a broad range of theoretical, experimental, and clinical aspects of atopic allergy. Areas covered include a historical introduction to the subject, the selection criteria and methodology used to evaluate the subjects’ specific immunologic responses, a tabulation of the physiochemical properties of most of the well-characterized purified allergens, an addendum covering the most extensive national survey of the allergic sensitivity ever performed in the United States, and a review of environmental and developmental determinants of atopic disease that focuses on early childhood. Of special interest are the final five chapters that assess current research on the human immune system and human susceptibility to immunologic diseases -- atopic allergy is now regarded as the most appropriate model for approaching such problems.
Subjects: Health Sciences
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