John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
John P. Cunha, DO, is a U.S. board-certified Emergency Medicine Physician. Dr. Cunha's educational background includes a BS in Biology from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, and a DO from the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences in Kansas City, MO. He completed residency training in Emergency Medicine at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark, New Jersey.
Steven Doerr, MD
Steven Doerr, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Emergency Medicine Physician. Dr. Doerr received his undergraduate degree in Spanish from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He graduated with his Medical Degree from the University Of Colorado Health Sciences Center in Denver, Colorado in 1998 and completed his residency training in Emergency Medicine from Denver Health Medical Center in Denver, Colorado in 2002, where he also served as Chief Resident.
- The allergic cascade facts
- What are the "players" in the allergic cascade?
- What about a more detailed look at the "players"?
- What are cytokines?
- What is the "early phase" of an allergic reaction?
- What is the "late phase" of an allergic reaction?
- What are the symptoms and consequences of the allergic cascade?
- How does understanding the allergic cascade help?
The allergic cascade facts
- The allergic response is usually very selective for specific allergens.
- T- and B-lymphocytes play important roles in the allergic reaction.
- Mast cells and basophils release a variety of chemical mediators and cytokines that cause allergic inflammation.
- In an allergic cascade, the immediate or "early" phase allergic reaction is subsequently followed by a more prolonged "late" phase reaction.
- Histamine is an important chemical mediator that causes many of the common allergic symptoms.
- Knowledge of the allergic cascade has resulted in effective treatments for allergy. Future research is aimed at finding new agents that intervene at specific levels of the allergic reaction.
The immune system is very specific and goal oriented. Although you may be allergic to a number of substances, allergic reactions are directed at specific allergens. For example, you may be allergic to Bermuda grass but not oysters. At times, however, two or more foreign substances might appear similar in nature to the immune system, which may mistake one for the other and react to both. For example, if you are allergic to birch trees, your immune system may also react to apples or other fruits, which it mistakes for birch pollen. These cross-reactions occur because of similar allergens that are produced by a variety of plants. Unfortunately, this can result in a detrimental sequence of cellular and chemical interactions sometimes directed at harmless agents. The end result is a well-defined constellation of signs and symptoms produced by the "allergic cascade."
Allergies & Asthma
Improve treatments & prevent attacks.