Developmental profiles of mucosal immunity in pre-school children
MetadataShow full item record
The development of a competent mucosal immune system in children occurs after birth in response to exposure to antigen. This study investigated the effect of attending pre-school on mucosal immunity. 37 children aged 3.5 to 5 years who attended pre-school were observed for a 10 month period. Demographic information was collected on previous childcare experiences, the home environment and clinical information relating to the child and the family. A daily illness log was kept for each child. Saliva samples were collected to measure mucosal immune status. A multivariate longitudinal analysis of the relation between immunoglobulins in saliva and age, gender, childcare experience, pre-school exposure, number of siblings, environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) exposure, atopy and hospitalisation was conducted. There was a positive association of higher salivary IgA levels with winter, with children being older than 4 years (p< 0.001), having attended childcare prior to commencing pre-school (p<0.05) and having been exposed to ETS at home (p<0.05). Lower IgA levels were associated with being atopic (p<0.05). Higher salivary IgG levels were associated with exposure to ETS (p<0.001) while lower levels were associated to having atopy. Higher salivary IgM levels were associated with previous childcare experience (p<0.01) whilst having been hospitalised was associated with lower salivary IgM levels (p<0.01). Lagged analyses demonstrated that immunological parameters were affected by the number of respiratory infections in the preceding 2 months. It is concluded that environmental factors have a profound effect on mucosal immune development in pre-school children, with the potential for significant clinical sequelae.
Clinical and Developmental Immunology
© The Author(s) 2010. The attached file is posted here with permission of the copyright owners for your personal use only. No further distribution permitted.For information about this journal please refer to the journal's website. The online version of this work is licensed under a Creative Commons License, available at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.1/au/
Immunology not elsewhere classified