Allergic diseases results upon the interaction between genetic and environmental factors. These include allergens of different sources, chemical pollutants as well as other agents. Our aim was to study two groups of subjects that included children and adolescents who although were born in the same area have different ethnicity.
Children and adolescent aged from 3-19 y.o. attending to primary-secondary schools were evaluated in a population of 6000 inhabitants located in South-East Spain. In order to get maximum adherence to the study audio-visual media and other source of information were used. A informed consent was provided by the parents from those who participated in the study. A questionnaire adapted to population studies was done and skin test with a panel of prevalent inhalant and food allergens was used.
From a total of 596 subjects included, the 80% were of Spanish origin (Group A) and the 20 % of the north of Africa (Group B). There were more females than males in the Group A (P<0.001). No difference in the mean age. Sensitisation to the differences pollens was as follows: grass pollen 16% versus 15%, cupressus 12% v 9%, olive 30% v 22%, English plantain 9% v 6%, parietaria 3.8% v 6.7% and salsola 16% versus 12%. No significant differences were observed with any of these pollens.
Subjects with different ethnicity show a similar pattern of sensitisation to inhalant allergens (pollens) if they have born in the same geographic area and have the same environmental factors.