Ken Lee pointed out that although much is known with regard to allergen cross-reactivity in humans, less is known about canine cross-reactive allergens. However, it appears that species-specific differences are present. For example, it has been demonstrated that the major D. farinae allergens in humans (Der f 1 and 2) differ from that of dogs (Der f 15).
Ken Lee reported that he investigated canine allergen cross-reactivity via ELISA inhibition studies utilizing serum samples from 50 dogs. The 50 canine serum samples evaluated were selected because they contained IgE recognizing all allergens investigated. Solid-phase ELISA tests were developed with grass, weed and tree antigens. Cross-inhibition studies were performed. For example, Bermuda antigen was placed in a solid phase, and a liquid phase of another grass antigen admixed with canine serum was added to the solid phase. If the canine IgE recognizing Bermuda also recognized the liquid phase antigen, the liquid phase allergen rather than the solid-phase Bermuda would be bound, and the optical density of the ELISA signal would be attenuated. Every allergen investigated was tested in the solid phase with all other antigens in the liquid phase (Figure 1).