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Immunochemical and physical quantitation of grass and olive pollen allergens and correlation with asthma admitions in Cáceres, Spain

Porcel Carreño S1, Gómez Nieves E1, Fernández-Caldas E2,3, Abel Fernández E2, Cases B2, Tudela JI2, Maghfour Martin Y1, Domínguez Domínguez E1, Alvarado Arenas M1, Jiménez Timón S1, Ahmida T1, García Ponce JF1, Jiménez Gallardo P1, Alvarado Izquierdo MI1, Hernández Arbeiza J1

1Sección de Alergología, Complejo Hospitalario Universitario de Cáceres
2Inmunotek SL, Alcalá de Henares, Madrid
3University of South Florida, College of Medicine, EE.UU.

J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 2020; Vol. 30(5)
doi: 10.18176/jiaci.0434

Background: The association between pollen counts and allergen levels in the air is controversial.
Objective: The aim of the study was to quantify total and major allergen levels of Phleum pratense and Olea europaea, and to analyze their correlation with grass and olive pollen counts and the number of asthmatic crisis attended in the Hospital Complex of Cáceres, Spain.
Material and methods: A volumetric air sampler and a Burkard spore-trap were used for pollen and aeroallergen collection during April-June 2011. Filters were extracted and major allergens were quantified by ELISA.
Results: May was the main grass pollination period, showing a maximum peak of 1,362 grass pollen grains/m3 (May 13th). The main pollination period of olive was April 30th-May 20th, showing a maximum peak of 851 olive pollen grains/m3 (May 11th). Moderate correlation between grass pollen counts or Phleum total allergen levels and asthma exacerbations were observed, which increased when a 3-day offset was introduced. Significant association between asthma exacerbations and levels of olive total allergens or olive pollen grains was observed when a 1-day offset was introduced. The maximum correlation (moderate-high) was observed 4 days and 6 days away from the maximum olive pollen peak and the maximum Ole e 1 peak level, respectively.
Conclusions: This study reveals a significant correlation between grass and olive pollination and the increase of the number of visits to the emergency room due to asthma crisis. The aerobiological pattern of allergen levels in the air is comparable to the pollen counts during the grass and olive pollination periods. 

Key words: Grass, Olive, Pollen, Allergens, Levels, Phl p 1, Phl p 5, Ole e 1