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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 474605, 13 pages
Review Article

Nanoparticulate Adjuvants and Delivery Systems for Allergen Immunotherapy

1Adjuvant Unit, Department of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Technology, and Department of Microbiology, University of Navarra, 31008 Pamplona, Spain
2Department of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Clinica Universidad de Navarra, 31008 Pamplona, Spain

Received 1 September 2011; Revised 19 October 2011; Accepted 25 October 2011

Academic Editor: Alf Månsson

Copyright © 2012 Juliana De Souza Rebouças et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In the last decades, significant progress in research and clinics has been made to offer possible innovative therapeutics for the management of allergic diseases. However, current allergen immunotherapy shows limitations concerning the long-term efficacy and safety due to local side effects and risk of anaphylaxis. Thus, effective and safe vaccines with reduced dose of allergen have been developed using adjuvants. Nevertheless, the use of adjuvants still has several disadvantages, which limits its use in human vaccines. In this context, several novel adjuvants for allergen immunotherapy are currently being investigated and developed. Currently, nanoparticles-based allergen-delivery systems have received much interest as potential adjuvants for allergen immunotherapy. It has been demonstrated that the incorporation of allergens into a delivery system plays an important role in the efficacy of allergy vaccines. Several nanoparticles-based delivery systems have been described, including biodegradable and nondegradable polymeric carriers. Therefore, this paper provides an overview of the current adjuvants used for allergen immunotherapy. Furthermore, nanoparticles-based allergen-delivery systems are focused as a novel and promising strategy for allergy vaccines.