LQB693 Immunological Approaches for Infection and Immunity

LQB693 Immunological Approaches for Infection and Immunity

You are required to collate your information to produce a Short Communication for one of the research focus areas that you studied in LQB693 Immunological Approaches for Infection and Immunity.

You will submit your Short Communication will be submitted the journal “Immunology and Cell Biology”. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/page/journal/14401711/homepage/ProductInformation.html

You will need to go to the journals website and down download the relevant information “author guidelines”. you are required to strictly follow all guidelines as outlined in the “manuscript categories and requirements” for a “short communication”.

This assessment will show how well you understand the scientific data you have produce and will show your developed complex reasoning and problem solving skills to produce a high quality document for dissemination to the scientific/medical community.

Here you will demonstrate your ability to use literature searching and information retrieval skills to assist with your critical analysis of published data, methods and presented conclusions, and communicate scientifically.


Proposal : Hypersensitivity/Allergy Towards more specific diagnosis of subtropical grass pollen allergy

Project Background

Grass pollens are a major cause of hay fever and allergic asthma.  These diseases affect up to 500 million people worldwide contributing to severe disease, reduced quality of life and decreased productivity.

Allergen-specific immunotherapy can diminish symptoms and reduce the risk of asthma, but most treatments for grass pollen allergy are based on temperate grasses. The world’s highest population densities live in the subtropics where subtropical Bahia, Johnson and Bermuda grass pollens are important allergens.

 The Davies Allergy Research laboratory has shown that the content of allergens and immune recognition of allergens of subtropical grass pollens appears to differ from those of temperate grasses. Our research shows regional differences in allergic sensitivity to subtropical and temperate grass pollen.  Furthermore, there were species-specific IgE binding to antigenic determinants of subtropical grass pollen allergens that were not represented in temperate grass pollens.

To understand the full diversity of subtropical grass pollen allergens, the QUT Allergy Research Laboratory has now characterised all the clinically important Panicoideae allergen components.  Group 1 allergens (beta-expansins), including Pas n 1 of Bahia and Sor h 1 of Johnson grass, are major allergens of all grass pollens.

Group 13 (polygalacturonase) allergens e.g. Pas n 13 of Bahia grass pollen, constitute the second most important allergen of the subtropical Bahia and Johnson grass pollens, but this allergen family appears to be less important for temperate grass pollen.  In contrast, group 5 (ribonuclear protein) allergens, e.g. Lol p 5 of Ryegrass, are restricted to temperate grasses and are reportedly absent from subtropical grass pollens.

The absence of the group 5 allergens in subtropical grasses is significant because extracts for temperate grass pollens are standardised by group 5 allergen content and serum IgE reactivity with group 5 allergens is associated with severity and risk of asthma.

Measurement of IgE reactivity with allergen components has the capacity to differentiate primary sensitivity to subtropical or temperate grass pollens and inform appropriate use of pollen allergen immunotherapy in patients with severe disease.

Tests for IgE to subtropical allergens for use as diagnostic and prognostic markers are needed. However, strong evidence of the distinct immune recognition of patients in different regions with local exposure patterns is needed to encourage the necessary investment in developing more specific tests and treatment for patients in subtropical regions.

 Specific diagnosis and treatment of subtropical grass pollen allergy has the potential to reduce the social, medical and economic burden of allergic diseases, providing benefit to patients in Queensland as well as other subtropical regions globally.

Project Aims

Aim 3: Compare regional differences in the avidity, level and specificity of IgE binding to grass pollen allergens of subtropical and temperate grass pollen allergens.


Allergens from Bahia and Bermuda, High Specificity and Avidity.