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PD52 - Role of atypical pathogens mycoplasma pneumoniae and chlamydia pneumoniae in childhood asthma exacerbations


The role of Mycoplasma pneumoniae and Chlamydia pneumoniae infection in acute asthma is determined by the ability of these pathogens to initiate the development of bronchial obstruction and to increase the frequency and severity of the disease exacerbations. Studies that have been previously published showed contradictory results, thus further research on this subject need to be performed.

Our study aimed to reveal immunological peculiarities in patient with asthma triggered by atypical pathogens in order to improve diagnosis and management of this category of patients.

Materials and methods

The study included 54 children aged from 1 to 18 years, hospitalized with asthma exacerbation. In all cases immunological essays were performed in order to assess specific antibodies (IgA/ IgM/ IgG to Mycoplasma pneumoniae and Chlamydia pneumoniae; total serum IgE levels examined using ELISA method.


Serological markers for atypical pathogens were identified in 32 (59%) children investigated. Acute Mycoplasma pneumoniae infection was estimated in 13% of cases, chronic infection with Mycoplasma pneumoniae was diagnosed in 26% of children. Chlamydia pneumoniae caused acute infection in 20.4% of those investigated. Also, total serum IgE levels in children with asthma and acute infection was 1.5-fold higher than in the serologically-negative group (916.0±236.0 IU/ml vs. 647.9±104.6 IU/ml, respectively, p>0.05). Likewise, a significant correlation of the total serum IgE levels with IgG anti-Mycoplasma pneumoniae antibodies was identified (r=0,58; p<0,01). This indicates that Mycoplasma pneumoniae infection may be involved in mechanisms of allergic sensitization, hyper-IgE production and asthma pathogenesis in children.


Immunological diagnosis of infections with atypical pathogens associated with asthma exacerbations may be helpful in improving the complex management of children with asthma. It offers the possibility to use the ethiotropic antibacterial therapy that may have a positive impact on the disease severity and the level of asthma control.

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This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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Savoschin, D., Cojocaru, A., Vasilos, L. et al. PD52 - Role of atypical pathogens mycoplasma pneumoniae and chlamydia pneumoniae in childhood asthma exacerbations. Clin Transl Allergy 4 (Suppl 1), P52 (2014).

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