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WAO News & Notes

December Medical Journal Review
WAO Member Society Spotlight
WAO Now: What's New in the World of WAO
Publication of Allergy Practice Worldwide: A Report by the World Allergy Organization Specialty and Training Council
Apply for a WAO Short Term Research Fellowship

And In Other News . . .

December World Medical Journal Review

Prof. Richard F. Lockey, MD, WAO Web Editor-in-Chief, reviewed premier December medical journal articles for practicing allergists. Read his top 3 picks below and for the other 8 reviews, click here.

1. IRREVERSIBLE LUNG FUNCTION IN YOUNG ADULTS WITH A HISTORY OF CHILDHOOD ASTHMA
Eighty-four (78% male) of 121 adults (17-30 years) who were included in the Childhood Asthma Study (1984-1994) were reevaluated by spirometry at age 17-30 years. Forty (48%) had severe spirometric abnormalities, twenty-eight of whom were given 1 mg/kg prednisone for one week and reevaluated. Twenty-one (75%) did not improve. Adult and childhood spirometric results were positively correlated (r = 0.49-0.72, P<.0001). Abnormal adult spirometric results were associated with: 1) longer duration of asthma at enrollment as a child, 2) increased childhood methacholine sensitivity and 3) premature birth. Editor's comment: More information is needed about early onset of asthma and how to prevent irreversible lung changes. Limb SL, et al. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2005; 116: 1213-19.

2. TRANSGENIC RICE FOR ALLERGY IMMUNOTHERAPY
Transgenic rice was used to express and orally deliver specific peptide epitopes of Japanese tree pollen, Cry j 1 and Cry j 2 to attenuate the development of allergic immune responses and inhibit allergen-specific IgE and IgG production in mice. This oral administration inhibits allergen-specific Th2 responses and decreases the level of allergen-specific CD4 + T cell-derived allergen-associated T helper 2 cytokine production of IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13 and histamine release. These experiments demonstrate that it is feasible to develop an effective peptide-based oral vaccine using transgenic plants to treat allergic diseases. Editor's comment: This paper suggests that "Atopically challenged children" may be able to eat rice to prevent allergic diseases. Takagi H, et al. PNAS 2005; 102: 17525. Editorial by Ma S, et al. 2005; 102: 17255.

3. ESOPHAGEAL EOSINOPHILS IN PATIENTS WITH POLLEN ALLERGY
Thirty-eight patients with symptomatic allergic rhinitis (with or without asthma) sensitive to grass pollen and 25 healthy non-atopics and 25 patients with GERD underwent gastrointestinal endoscopy during the grass season. High levels of esophageal eosinophils were found in ten allergic patients (26%), five GERD patients (21%) but not in healthy controls. Eosinophilic infiltration at the distal esophagus (versus the entire esophagus) was more prominent in the reflux group vs. the allergic group. The authors speculate that these findings may reflect the systemic and common mucosal aspects of allergic inflammation. Editor's comment: High levels of eosinophils in the esophagus can be associated with inhalant allergens. Onbasi K, et al. Clin Exp Allergy 2005; 35: 1423. Editorial by Spergel JM, 2005; 35: 1421.

To read the additional reviews, click here.


WAO Member Society Spotlight – Malaysian Society of Allergy and Immunology

Founded in 1998, this humble society has grown slowly but surely into one of the most active societies in the WAO. Although relatively small with approximately 200 members, this society has become quite influential in increasing allergy awareness in the Southeast Asia region.

The need for such a society is great in Malaysia as allergy is a huge problem and does not receive the awareness that is necessary. Although the awareness of allergy has increased tremendously due to the efforts of the society, much more work has to be done to push allergy into the mainstream.

From the start, our society has been privileged to have had the guidance of mentors in allergy such as Profs. SGO Johansson, Sergio Bonnini, Paul Potter, Cas Motala, Ronald Walls, Connie Katelaris and, very recently, Carlos Baena-Cagnani. These internationally renowned allergists, including past and present Executive Committee members of the WAO, have guided the society, and helped launch new modules of GLORIA in Malaysia. Four GLORIA educational modules have been launched in Malaysia and disseminated locally with our society being one of the most enthusiastic and prolific disseminators of these modules anywhere in the world.

Although a relatively small society, we are often perceived as the hub of allergy in the immediate region and, as such, have assisted other societies in the region to join WAO or to upgrade their status within WAO by organizing and hosting an Emerging Societies Meeting (ESM) three years ago. This was mostly locally orchestrated, but this year, a WAO sanctioned ESM will take place in conjunction with our 7th Malaysian Congress of Allergy and Immunology in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from the 10-12th March 2006. At the same time, we will also be having conjoint symposia with our neighbor, the Allergy and Immunology Society of Thailand, to promote the upcoming World Allergy Congress 2007.

Fellow members of the WAO and friends, please come and visit us for a meeting and also have a holiday of your life in this beautiful country!


WAO Now: What's New in the World of WAO

Allergy Practice Worldwide: A Report by the World Allergy Organization Specialty and Training Council

To support the case for the development of allergy as a specialty worldwide, Allergy Practice Worldwide: A Report by the World Allergy Organization Specialty and Training Council is published this month in both WAO journals, Allergy & Clinical Immunology International - Journal of the World Allergy Organization, and International Archives of Allergy and Immunology (Warner JO, et al; Allergy Clin Immunol Int - J World Allergy Org 2006; 18:4-10, and Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2006;139:166-174).

This valuable report provides data from WAO member societies on the estimated prevalence of allergic disease, the number of trained allergists seeing adult and pediatric allergy patients, and information about the clinicians most likely to see patients with allergic disorders. An on-line version is available at www.acii.net and at www.karger.com/iaa.

WAO Short-Term Research Fellowship 2006 Applications

The World Allergy Organization (WAO) offers two Short-Term Research Fellowships, to commence in 2006, to support junior allergists to visit a center of their choice to learn a research technique. The envisaged duration of each attachment is 2-3 weeks. WAO will contribute up to a maximum of $2,500 USD, to include travel and accommodations, for each Short-Term Fellowship.

Priority will be given to junior clinicians within five years of award of the most recent professional degree, who are specializing in allergy and who are affiliated to an academic department or clinical institute. Applicants must be current members of a WAO member society.

The Short-Term Fellowships will be applied to a project which meets one of the WAO Research Priorities:

  • Genetic factors involved in the development of allergic disease and response to treatment
  • Allergen characterization and standardization
  • Clinical and basic studies in allergy and asthma

Application forms may be downloaded from: http://www.worldallergy.org/wao_societies/06fellowship.doc

The World Allergy Organization's flagship educational program, GLORIA™ (Glo bal R esources i n A llergy™), will begin 2006 with two module placements at the following meeting:

The Fourth International Congress of the Egyptian Society of Pediatric Allergy & Immunology
16-17 February 2006
Cairo Sheraton Hotel

GLORIA Symposia:

Module 5: The Symptoms and Treatment of Asthma
16 February 2006 from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. in Salah El-Deen Hall

Module 6: Food Allergy
17 February 2006 from 9:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. in Salah El-Deen (A) Hall

GLORIA Training Session
16 February 2006 from 5:00 p.m. – 5:45 p.m. in Nefertiti Hall

GLORIA Faculty: Prof. G. Walter Canonica, Italy and Prof. Carlos E. Baena-Cagnani, Argentina

Sign up for On-Line Journal Subscription –

WAO and Hogrefe & Huber Publishers are offering a limited number of free on-line subscriptions to Allergy & Clinical Immunology International - Journal of the World Allergy Organization for members in developing countries. If you are interested in receiving a complimentary, on-line subscription, please send an e-mail to info@worldallergy.org, noting "Free Journal Subscription" in the subject line, with the following details:

First name
Last name
Postal address
City, State/Province and postal code
Country
E-mail address
Name of Member Society


And In Other News

Allergy Book Review
Allergy: An Atlas of Investigation and Management
SH Arshad, ST Holgate, NF Adkinson, Jr, KS Babu
2005 Clinical Publishing Ltd

List Price: $139.95 USD
Available from Atlas Medical Publishing

Reviewer: Steven L. Cole, DO
Division of Allergy and Immunology
University of South Florida College of Medicine

Description:
This atlas reviews epidemiology, clinical manifestations and treatment of allergic disorders. The text provides for a general overview of allergic disorders commonly encountered in the allergist's office as well as a review of diagnostic tests.

Purpose:
The purpose is to provide up-to-date information on the mechanism, epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment of allergic disorders. It is designed to present the reader with the most salient features of each disorder to facilitate learning and memory recall. The majority of texts in allergy are lengthy and at times cumbersome to read; however, this text succeeds in focusing the reader on key aspects of disease manifestation and management.

Audience:
The atlas is targeted to medical students, residents and clinicians in primary care specialties. The book is also a useful guide for practicing allergists and allergists-in-training to quickly review illustrations and algorithms of atopic disorders.

Features:
The eleven chapters cover the major allergic disorders seen in the field of allergy. Particular attention is given to asthma and diagnostic testing. Numerous illustrations and color photographs can be found in every chapter. The photographs are the most striking feature of this book and clearly set it apart from similar texts on the subject. Most chapters also include tables and algorithms to aid in the discussion and understanding of the material covered in the text. A deficiency noted in the text is a lack of detail in management issues and specific dosing of medications.

Assessment:
While the written description of physical exam findings is no substitute for the clinician's own experience at the bedside, the color photographs and informative illustrations found in this atlas provide the learner with the next best thing. Although well-written and easily understood chapters covering complex subject matters are a rarity in medicine, this book is an excellent resource for review and a convenient visual guide of allergic disorders. It is certain to complement the shelves of anyone who has an interest in allergic disorders. 

Find more allergy book reviews on the WAO Website here.

The World Allergy Organization's mission is to build a global alliance of allergy societies to advance excellence in clinical care, research, education and training. Visit us on the Web at www.worldallergy.org

World Allergy Organization (WAO)
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Milwaukee, WI 53202-3823
Email: info@worldallergy.org

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