Novel Biomarker Could Predict Severity of Allergic Rhinitis in Children

Study showed that IL-1β can be a biomarker of active allergic diseases such as allergic rhinitis, asthma, and atopy.

High expression of interleukin (IL)-1β was associated with a significantly greater risk for moderate to severe persistent allergic rhinitis in children, according to results from a study published in Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology.

The researchers conducted a nested case-control study of 116 children with allergic rhinitis. Study patients were categorized into 2 groups (mild persistent or intermittent and moderate to severe allergic rhinitis) on the basis of disease severity and duration of symptoms. The team characterized expression of inflammatory markers by collecting serum samples and measuring levels of several biomarkers. Subsequently, associations among biomarker expression, disease severity, and clinical parameters were analyzed.

After analysis, the researchers found that IL-1β, CCL-24, and eosinophil count were significantly elevated in children with moderate to severe allergic rhinitis (P =.003; P =.039; P =.008). On multivariate analysis, high expression of IL-1β was associated with a 4.7 times greater risk for moderate to severe persistent allergic rhinitis (P =.030).

One key limitation of the study was the geographic specificity of the sample. As a result, the findings may not be generalizable to other patient populations.

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“[These findings] suggest that IL-1B should be investigated as a therapeutic target in severe [persistent allergic rhinitis] and other allergic diseases,” the researchers wrote.

“Further studies will help fully elucidate the potential role of IL-1β in [allergic rhinitis] treatment,” they concluded.


Han MW, Kim SH, Oh I, Kim YH, Lee J. Serum IL-1β can be a biomarker in children with severe persistent allergic rhinitis [published online September 18, 2019]. Allergy Asthma Clin Immunol. doi:10.1186/s13223-019-0368-8