Krzysztof Piwowarek

and 5 more

Background: Platelet-activating factor (PAF) has a direct role as a mediator in the pathogenesis of various disorders with an inflammatory component, including those with allergic aetiology. The peripheral blood concentration of PAF is dynamically regulated by plasma PAF acetylhydrolase (PAF-AH). Previous studies suggest that low activity of plasma PAF-AH could be a predictive marker for increased severity of some types of allergic hypersensitivity reactions – especially anaphylaxis. Aim of the study: The purpose of the study was to evaluate the association between plasma PAF-AH activity and severity in patients with anaphylactic reactions following a wasp or bee sting. Methods: The study group of 89 patients was divided into two subgroups depending on the increasing severity of the most severe anaphylactic reaction in the past, which was assessed according to the Müller’s scale. A control group of 20 people was established. Plasma PAF-AH activity was measured using a colorimetric method. Results: It has been observed that plasma activity of platelet-activating factor acetylhydrolase was significantly lower in patients with anaphylaxis history compared to the control group with negative atopic history (on average 21.38 nmol/min/ml for the control group, 9.47 nmol/min/ml for the first subgroup and 10.16 nmol/min/ml for the second subgroup, in both cases p < 0.0001). Conclusion: The plasma activity of PAF-AH is a promising parameter that can help to distinguish a group of patients not threatened with development of anaphylaxis and not requiring laborious or expensive prophylactic procedures.