BACKGROUND: Appropriate allergen threshold concentrations (TCs) for intradermal testing (IDT) have not been established in horses for many pollen and mould allergens.
OBJECTIVES: To determine the TCs in non-allergic horses and describe the frequency of late phase reactions for 26 allergens, including trees, grasses, weeds and moulds in horses residing in the southern Unites States.
ANIMALS: Twenty four clinically normal horses in the southern United States.
METHODS: Threshold concentrations for different allergens were determined using IDT subjective measurements at 30 minutes. Delayed reactions were evaluated at 4 and 24 h.
RESULTS: Threshold concentrations (all PNU/mL) were established for eight tree allergens (black willow 1,000, box elder 1,000, live oak 1,000, pecan 2,000, white ash 4,000, red oak 4,000, red mulberry 2,000 and green ash 2,000); two grass allergens (Johnson grass 250 PNU/mL and Kentucky blue grass 500 PNU/mL); two weeds (carelessweed 1,000 PNU/mL, great ragweed 500 PNU/mL) and one mould (Curvularia 8,000 PNU/mL). The TC was not determined due to excessive reactivity at the lowest concentration tested (1,000 PNU/mL) for bahia and perennial rye grass. Eleven other allergens did not meet the criteria to establish a TC when evaluated at 30 min due to lack of positive reactions. Multiple allergens caused positive reactions in ≥10% of horses at 4 h. Reactions at 24 h were rare with the exception of one horse.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL IMPORTANCE: This study identified intradermal TC for multiple pollen and mould allergens in horses. These values may prove useful for optimizing allergen concentrations for IDT of allergic horses.