E-mail: Prescilla Jeurink
Bosrandweg 206704 PH Wageningen
The mutual influences of allergies and lifestyle
This project is part of the Allergy Consortium Wageningen, which employed 5 PhD students in 2003 on intersections of different Science Groups within the Wageningen University. This project was placed under the supervision of Social Sciences and Animal sciences, resulting in a multidisciplinary research topic.
The projects aims at the influence of lifestyle on the development of cross-reactive food allergies. The main focus is on hay fever caused by birch trees and their cross-reactions with apple, carrot and celery. Participants are asked to give blood for an allergen-specific antibody measurement. After the antibody determination, the participants are asked to fill in an internet-based questionnaire in order map their lifestyle factors. Eventually, the lifestyle factors will be linked to the antibody responses. The combination of the two should lead to an advise which lifestyle factors should be avoided in order to prevent cross-reactive allergies. This part of the project is called the FREYAL study. FREYAL stands for Factors Related to Your Allergies and Lifestyle.
A second track in this project uses a mouse model for allergic asthma to establish which immune cells are needed to provoke an allergic response. In these studies, the T and B cell, and their produced or needed cytokines are playing a central role.
The third line of this research project aims at the in vitro effect of immune modulating compounds from mushrooms on the white blood cells of healthy or allergic individuals. Also here, the cell types, cell proliferation, cell viability and the cytokine production are monitored. For more detailed information about the mushroom work, please check the work performed by Prof. dr. Harry Wichers.