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Allergic diseases are highly prevalent worldwide and affect all age groups, contributing to a high personal and socioeconomic burden. Treatment with an “allergy vaccine” or allergen immunotherapy (AIT) aims to provide long-lasting benefits by inducing unresponsiveness to the relevant antigen. The consequences of the therapy are considered disease modifying and range from dampening of the immediate immune responses to the reduction of secondary tissue remodeling. Furthermore, AIT interventions have a potential to slow or cease the development of additional allergic manifestations with a long term overall effect on morbidity and quality of life. Here we review proposed mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effects of immunotherapy for allergic diseases. Further, we discuss both standard and novel approaches and possible future directions in the development of AIT.


Journal article


NPJ Vaccines



Publication Date



Radciffe Department of Medicine, University of Oxford, MRC Human Immunology Unit, Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, JR Hospital, Oxford, OX3 9DS, United Kingdom


allergy, immunotherapy, vaccine