Allergen and irritant exposure and exposure-response relationships

  • Dick Heederik
  • Gert Doekes
Part of the Progress in Inflammation Research book series (PIR)


Exposure to allergens and irritants is a complex phenomenon. Especially the particulate nature of many natural allergens in combination with the low exposure creates remarkable phenomena. Many allergens appear to be potent sensitizers in the nanograms per cubic meter of air range. Evidence exists that workers can be sensitized even after exposure to a low number of particles. With exposure in the low nanogram range, the respiratory tract is exposed to distinct exposure quanta of a few particles, which lead to high local concentrations of allergenic molecules. With gaseous exposure, a more equal exposure over the large surface area of the respiratory organ is to be expected. These phenomena may have mechanistic and biological implications, but certainly determine exposure assessment approaches, the interpretation of exposure measurements and the evaluation of exposure-response relationships.


Allergy Clin Immunol Allergen Exposure Occupational Asthma Occup Environ Dermal Exposure 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Birkhäuser / Springer Basel 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dick Heederik
    • 1
  • Gert Doekes
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Environmental Epidemiology, Institute for Risk Assessment SciencesUniversity of UtrechtUtrechtThe Netherlands

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