Insect bite hypersensitivity (IBH) is an IgE -mediated allergic dermatitis, caused by bites of Culicoides insects. IBH-affected horses suffer from severe pruritus and skin lesions. IBH occurs in 5-10% of horses, but can affect >50% of horses importe d from Iceland. Currently, the only effective treatment is avoidance of Culicoides and symptomatic treatment, often using corticosteroids. Our aim is to develop better treatments for IBH, such as allergen immunotherapy using pure allergens and immunomodulators . For this, we strive to understand the contribution of immune cells and of the skin barrier in the pathogenesis of IBH, and to identify the allergens at the molecular level.
Component-resolved microarray analysis of IgE sensitization profiles to Culicoides recombinant allergens in horses with insect bite hypersensitivity . Novotny EN, White SJ, Wilson AD, Stefánsdóttir SB, Tijhaar E, Jonsdóttir S, Frey R, Reiche D, Rose H, Rhyner C, Schüpbach-Regula G, Torsteinsdóttir S, Alcocer M, Marti E. Allergy 2021 Apr;76(4):1147-1157. doi: 10.1111/all.14556
Investigating the epithelial barrier and immune signatures in the pathogenesis of equine insect bite hypersensitivity . Cvitas I, Oberhänsli S, Leeb T, Dettwiler M, Müller E, Bruggman R, Marti E. PLoS One 2020 15(4): e0232189
A list of all publications can be found here.