What is AllergoOncology?

According to this review, AllergoOncology is a new field which potentially could give new insights into the role of IgE in malignancies, thus opening new avenues for tumor therapy.

Some studies suggest inverse associations between allergic diseases and malignancies.

IgE antibodies specific to tumor antigens have shown antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity and phagocytosis. IgE nonspecifically attached to tumor cells proved to be an adjuvant establishing tumor-specific immune memory.

IgE antibodies may not only act in natural tumor surveillance, but could possibly also be exploited for tumor control. Eosinophils, mast cells and macrophages can be armed with the cytophilic IgE and become anti-tumor effectors, able to trace viable tumor cells in the tissues.

According a literature review, individuals with any type of allergy have a decreased risk for cancer (compared with the general population), including:

  • glioma
  • colorectal cancer
  • cancer of the larynx
  • non-Hodgkin lymphoma
  • cancer of the esophagus
  • oral cancer
  • pancreatic cancer
  • stomach cancer
  • uterine body cancer

However, an increased risk for the following cancers was observed among those with allergies:

  • bladder cancer
  • lymphoma
  • myeloma
  • prostate cancer

Further research is needed to verify these results and to determine why such associations may exist.

The association between allergies and cancer: what is currently known? Merrill RM, Isakson RT, Beck RE. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2007 Aug;99(2):102-16; quiz 117-9, 150.
Relationship between Allergy and Cancer: enhanced immunosurveillance might prevent cancer http://goo.gl/uq9mC
Can allergies prevent tumors? Can antihistamines increase risk? CNN - Probably not. Most pts with allergies take anthistamines.
Assessment of Type of Allergy and Antihistamine Use in the Development of Glioma http://goo.gl/105HQ
The nascent field of AllergoOncology http://goo.gl/tUZ32
Image source: Cancers are caused by a series of mutations. Wikipedia, public domain.

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