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NIAID-funded investigators have determined the structure of one of the allergenic components of cockroach debris, enhancing understanding of cockroach allergy. Exposure to cockroaches is a major environmental trigger of asthma attacks among inner-city children and can worsen their asthma symptoms.
The findings, published in the December issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (JACI), also will help scientists develop standardized methods to measure this material in allergy tests. Reducing cockroach allergen exposure is an important component of asthma management in children who live in low-income, urban housing, where cockroach infestations are common and asthma severity is high.
For more information about the study, read the abstract on the JACI website.