What is the pathophysiology of allergic contact dermatitis due to Asteraceae plants?

Updated: Jun 10, 2021
  • Author: Glen H Crawford, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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The major sensitizers, SQLs, are found in the leaves, stems, flowers, and some pollen. By themselves, SQLs are not phototoxic or photoallergic. However, 85% of patients with chronic photosensitivity dermatoses may react to Asteraceae plants. The relationship between SQLs and chronic actinic dermatitis is unknown.

Because SQL cross-reactivity follows no apparent rules, results of screening tests for SQL allergy, even with the SQL patch-test mix (ie, alantolactone, dehydrocostus lactone, costunolide), are not reliable. When patch tests are preformed to screen for possible allergy to members of the Asteraceae family, using parts of the particular suspected plant is best.

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