Allergy sufferers in Italy and around the world are on the increase. Looking at ISTAT data, 10.7% of the national population was suffering from chronic allergic diseases in 2016. According to the World Allergy Organization 300 million people in the world suffer from severe asthma. Another pathology with a high incidence is allergic rhinitis, which affects between 10% and 30% of all adults and up to 40% of children.
In a context such as this, early and effective diagnosis becomes essential. In Humanitas, for the first time in Lombardy, a new test developed by a group of Austrian researchers is being tested.
The test will be presented at upcoming international allergy conferences in Orlando and Bilbao.
The possibilities offered by the new test
The test becomes a valuable aid for allergologists thanks to a mapping of 282 allergens and molecules together and it is the result of the work of Scientific Research carried out by Professor Giorgio Walter Canonica, Head of the Center for Personalized Medicine for Asthma and Allergies at the Humanitas Immunology Center and Professor Giovanni Melioli, Head of Molecular Allergy Diagnostics, who have tested the new test and carried out publications that validate its effectiveness.
“The test – explains Prof. Canonica – is able to investigate the predisposition of its system to react against normally harmless substances. Based on the composition of the panels of allergenic and molecular allergen extracts, the test leads to an almost complete picture of the sensitization of each patient. The specialists are thus able to be much more precise in diagnosis and treatment, which is becoming increasingly personalized”.
One of the possible future developments of the instrument will be integration with artificial intelligence. “Thanks to a software currently being tested, which helps to interpret allergens and synthesizes the results of the test – adds Professor Melioli – we will be able to provide the patient with a detailed mapping of his clinical picture through individual explanations next to each piece of data.
The allergen classes analyzed by the test
Pollens (grasses, tree pollen, grass pollen)
Leather (pets, farm animals)
Mite (powders and mites)
Plant food (fruit, vegetables and mushrooms, dried fruit and seeds, legumes, cereals, spices)
Microorganisms (mould and yeast)
Animal food (milk, eggs, fish and seafood, meat)
Insects and poisons (bees and wasps, cockroaches).