Special Issue "Venom Allergy: General Concepts, Allergens, Diagnosis and Treatment"

A special issue of Toxins (ISSN 2072-6651). This special issue belongs to the section "Animal Venoms".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2021.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Simon Blank
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Center of Allergy and Environment (ZAUM), Technical University of Munich, Faculty of Medicine and Helmholtz Center Munich, German Research Center for Environmental Health, D-85764 Munich, Germany
Interests: hymenoptera venom; venom allergy; allergy; immunological mechanisms; T cell response; B cell response; antibodies; immunological tolerance; allergen; venom proteomics; biochemical protein characterization

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

I am pleased to invite you to contribute to this Special Issue of Toxins dealing with all aspects of venom allergy. Venom allergy is one of the most serious IgE-mediated hypersensitivity reactions due to the high risk of severe and even fatal anaphylaxis. In different regions of the world, stings of various Hymenoptera species, such as bees, yellow jackets, wasps or stinging ants, are common elicitors of venom allergy. Moreover, invasive species, such as the European paper wasp or the Asian hornet, are gaining importance in allergology. In the majority of patients, venom allergy can be effectively treated by venom-specific immunotherapy, the only available immunomodulatory and curative approach. However, adequate patient management and treatment rely on a comprehensive diagnostic work-up, including the proof of clinically relevant sensitization and identification of the allergy-relevant venom. In recent years, biochemical and molecular biological methods have made a significant contribution to the identification and characterization of new allergens of Hymenoptera venoms, shifting the focus from the whole venom to individual allergenic molecules. For instance, this has led to the development of molecular or component-resolved diagnostics, which in several cases has improved accurate diagnosis. Moreover, venom allergy represents an ideal model to study the mechanisms of allergic inflammation and immune tolerance to allergens as well as the allergen–immune system interaction.

This Special Issue aims to give a comprehensive overview of current state-of-the-art concepts, as well as the latest developments and further perspectives, in venom allergy. Moreover, allergy-relevant species, as well as their venoms and venom allergens, should be addressed.

In this Special Issue, original research articles and reviews are welcome. Research areas may include (but are not limited to) venom proteomics and allergens, diagnosis and treatment of venom allergy as well as basic immunological and biochemical mechanisms.

I look forward to receiving your contributions.

Dr. Simon Blank
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Toxins is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • allergen
  • allergy diagnosis
  • Hymenoptera venom
  • immunological tolerance
  • insect sting anaphylaxis
  • stinging Hymenoptera
  • venom allergy
  • venom–immune system interaction
  • venom proteomics
  • venom-specific immunotherapy

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

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Article
Characterization of New Allergens from the Venom of the European Paper Wasp Polistes dominula
Toxins 2021, 13(8), 559; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/toxins13080559 - 10 Aug 2021
Viewed by 761
Abstract
Discriminating Polistes dominula and Vespula spp. venom allergy is of growing importance worldwide, as systemic reactions to either species’ sting can lead to severe outcomes. Administering the correct allergen-specific immunotherapy is therefore a prerequisite to ensure the safety and health of venom-allergic patients. [...] Read more.
Discriminating Polistes dominula and Vespula spp. venom allergy is of growing importance worldwide, as systemic reactions to either species’ sting can lead to severe outcomes. Administering the correct allergen-specific immunotherapy is therefore a prerequisite to ensure the safety and health of venom-allergic patients. Component-resolved diagnostics of Hymenoptera venom allergy might be improved by adding additional allergens to the diagnostic allergen panel. Therefore, three potential new allergens from P. dominula venom—immune responsive protein 30 (IRP30), vascular endothelial growth factor C (VEGF C) and phospholipase A2 (PLA2)—were cloned, recombinantly produced and biochemically characterized. Sera sIgE titers of Hymenoptera venom-allergic patients were measured in vitro to assess the allergenicity and potential cross-reactivity of the venom proteins. IRP30 and VEGF C were classified as minor allergens, as sensitization rates lay around 20–40%. About 50% of P. dominula venom-allergic patients had measurable sIgE titers directed against PLA2 from P. dominula venom. Interestingly, PLA2 was unable to activate basophils of allergic patients, questioning its role in the context of clinically relevant sensitization. Although the obtained results hint to a questionable benefit of the characterized P. dominula venom proteins for improved diagnosis of venom-allergic patients, they can contribute to a deeper understanding of the molecular mechanisms of Hymenoptera venoms and to the identification of factors that determine the allergenic potential of proteins. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Venom Allergy: General Concepts, Allergens, Diagnosis and Treatment)
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Review

Jump to: Research

Review
Venom Immunotherapy: From Proteins to Product to Patient Protection
Toxins 2021, 13(9), 616; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/toxins13090616 - 01 Sep 2021
Viewed by 627
Abstract
In this review, we outline and reflect on the important differences between allergen-specific immunotherapy for inhalant allergies (i.e., aeroallergens) and venom-specific immunotherapy (VIT), with a special focus on Venomil® Bee and Wasp. Venomil® is provided as a freeze-dried extract and a [...] Read more.
In this review, we outline and reflect on the important differences between allergen-specific immunotherapy for inhalant allergies (i.e., aeroallergens) and venom-specific immunotherapy (VIT), with a special focus on Venomil® Bee and Wasp. Venomil® is provided as a freeze-dried extract and a diluent to prepare a solution for injection for the treatment of patients with IgE-mediated allergies to bee and/or wasp venom and for evaluating the degree of sensitivity in a skin test. While the materials that make up the product have not changed, the suppliers of raw materials have changed over the years. Here, we consolidate relevant historical safety and efficacy studies that used products from shared manufacture supply profiles, i.e., products from Bayer or Hollister–Stier. We also consider the characterization and standardization of venom marker allergens, providing insights into manufacturing controls that have produced stable and consistent quality profiles over many years. Quality differences between products and their impacts on treatment outcomes have been a current topic of discussion and further research. Finally, we review the considerations surrounding the choice of depot adjuvant most suitable to augmenting VIT. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Venom Allergy: General Concepts, Allergens, Diagnosis and Treatment)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: New Polistes dominula venom allergens
Authors: Simon Blank
Affiliation: Center of Allergy and Environment (ZAUM), Technical University of Munich, Faculty of Medicine and Helmholtz Center Munich, German Research Center for Environmental Health, D-85764 Munich, Germany

Title: The venom proteome of Vespa velutina
Authors: Simon Blank
Affiliation: Center of Allergy and Environment (ZAUM), Technical University of Munich and Helmholtz Center Munich, Member of the German Center of Lung Research (DZL), Munich, Germany

Title: Management of hornet venom allergy
Authors: Peter Korošec; Mitja Košnik
Affiliation: University Clinic of Respiratory and Allergic Diseases Golnik, Golnik, Slovenia

Title: Mangement of Polistes Vespula double-sensitization
Authors: Carmen Moreno
Affiliation: Allergy Unit of the Reina Sofía University Hospital

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