Allergy is a major health issue not only in human patients but also in domestic animals. Atopic dermatitis in dogs, insect bite hypersensitivity and recurrent airway obstruction in horses, and asthma in cats are the most important allergic diseases in animals and research on these diseases is ongoing worldwide.
These naturally occurring allergic diseases in animals share many features with their human counterparts. Therefore, they can serve as useful animal models of allergy and be used in comparative studies. Conversely, information from human allergy research can improve the diagnosis and treatment of animal patients with allergies. An increased interaction between human and veterinary allergologists has great potential for both sides. Therefore a new Interest Group for Comparative and Veterinary Allergology has been established within EAACI with the following aims:
- to provide a communication platform covering all aspects of veterinary and comparative allergology;
- to facilitate communication and cooperation between human and veterinary allergologists and those involved in allergy research using animal models;
- to promote education and information exchange through organization of focused meetings, workshops and allergy schools;
- to promote the development and acceptance of standardised protocols and guidelines for research and clinical veterinary allergology;
- to work closely with societies specialized in veterinary allergology, immunology, dermatology and internal medicine.