Alternaria alternate (Plant rot fungus)
Alternaria alternate is a fungus that causes disease in over 380 species of plant and it is one of the most common molds associated with allergic diseases. A high level of A. alternata fungal spores in the atmosphere is directly proportional to the severity of respiratory allergic symptoms, hospital admissions, and deaths due to asthma. The major allergenic protein of A. alternata, Alt a 1, is a species-specific molecular marker that has been strongly associated with allergenicity with over 80% of Alternaria species–sensitive patients producing IgE antibodies to this protein. Alt a 1 has been found to be sufficient for a reliable diagnosis of A. alternata sensitization and induces skin prick reactivity comparable with that produced by A alternata extract.
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