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Journal of Immunology Research
Volume 2016, Article ID 1596828, 6 pages
Research Article

Attention Deficit Disorder and Allergic Rhinitis: Are They Related?

IMMUNOe Research Centers, Centennial, CO 80112, USA

Received 28 February 2016; Accepted 22 June 2016

Academic Editor: Enrico Maggi

Copyright © 2016 Isaac Melamed and Melinda Heffron. 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.


The association between ADHD and allergy remains controversial. Our previous findings suggest that nerve growth factor may link the nervous and immune systems. The primary objective of this study was to determine if a combination of cetirizine + methylphenidate is effective in children with comorbid ADHD and allergic rhinitis. We also examined the role of nerve growth factor in these comorbidities. Our randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study enrolled 38 children diagnosed with comorbid ADHD and allergy using cetirizine (), sustained-release methylphenidate (), or cetirizine + methylphenidate (). Endpoints compared baseline to posttreatment evaluations for allergic rhinitis and ADHD scores. Serum nerve growth factor levels were measured using ELISA. For allergy endpoints, combination therapy produced results superior to individual therapy. For ADHD, similar scores were achieved for individual therapy; however, combination therapy resulted in improved scores. Nerve growth factor levels were downregulated following this trend. We conclude that ADHD and allergic rhinitis may have common mechanism and represent a comorbid condition that links the nervous system to the immune system. Further studies are needed.