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Alternaria sensitisation at age 6 years is associated with subsequent airway hyper-responsiveness in non-asthmatics
  1. Anunya Hiranrattana1,
  2. Debra A Stern2,
  3. Stefano Guerra2,
  4. Marilyn Halonen2,
  5. Anne L Wright1,2,
  6. Michael Daines1,2,
  7. Fernando D Martinez2,
  8. Wayne J Morgan1,2
  1. 1 Pediatric Pulmonary Allergy Division, Department of Pediatrics, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA
  2. 2 Asthma and Airway Disease Research Center, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA
  1. Correspondence to Professor Wayne J Morgan, Asthma and Airway Disease Research Center, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85724, USA; wjmorgan{at}


In the non-selected birth cohort Tucson Children’s Respiratory Study, early sensitisation to Alternaria was associated with increased airway hyper-responsiveness (AHR) into adult life among non-asthmatics. The increase in AHR was of a similar magnitude to that seen for Alternaria sensitised asthmatics and was primarily evident among those who were overweight or obese. In contrast, there was no significant association between early sensitisation to aeroallergens other than Alternaria and AHR among non-asthmatics. Why this group of Alternaria sensitised individuals without asthma demonstrated increased AHR of a magnitude similar to asthmatics is unknown and requires further investigation.

  • allergic lung disease
  • asthma
  • asthma epidemiology

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  • Contributors Study concept and design: AH, WJM and FDM. Participant recruitment: ALW. Acquisition of data: FDM, WJM, ALW and MH. Analysis of data: DAS, AH, WJM, SG and FDM. Data interpretation and drafting of the manuscript: AH, WJM, DAS, SG, MD, ALW, MH and FDM. All authors critically read, commented on and approved the final version of the manuscript.

  • Funding This work was supported by US Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Heart Blood and Lung Institute, grant number 132523.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Not required.

  • Ethics approval This research was approved by the Institutional Review Board of the University of Arizona.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.