Type I hypersensitivity is characterized by heterogeneous clinical manifestations and specialists estimate that today around 30% of the general population suffers from an allergic disease. Each day new allergens are being reported and some sources are even not yet identified. This is true especially when talking about tropical regions such Brazil that present a complex biodiversity and lacks research groups focused on this field. Insect venoms are amongst the most prevalent allergens. The social wasp Polybia paulista (Hymenoptera vespidae) is endemic to southeastern Brazil and is responsible for serious accidents due to their venomous stings, causing allergic reactions that can lead to anaphylactic shock. Several components presenting molecular or biological mimicry can be found in different species of wasps and lead to a cross immunological reaction but they are not always responsible for allergic manifestations. Therefore, immunotherapy that continues to be the most suitable treatment is unsuccessful, since specific allergen identification is crucial. Taking these into account and considering the high number of patients that are attended at Serviço de Imunologia Clínica e Alergia do Hospital das Clínicas de São Paulo (HC-FMUSP) with clinical manifestations of allergies not yet determined or barely studied we intend to create a systematic clinical and laboratorial investigative practice through a 2D imunoblotting proteomic approach to identify and characterize immunological and physic-chemically new allergens of Polybia paulista venom. In addition, to identify potential cross reactivity with already known allergens and make epitope prediction in silico that can be an important tool for development of hypoallergenic molecules in the future.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: