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Segregation analysis of the specific response to allergens (SRA) was performed in a sample of 234 randomly selected Australian families using the regressive models. Various SRA phenotypes were considered using broad and narrow definitions of these phenotypes, according to the type of test used, skin test or RAST test, and the specificity of the response to allergen. Strong evidence for familial dependencies among blood relatives was shown for most SRA phenotypes, especially when using a broad definition. There was no evidence for a Mendelian factor accounting for the familial transmission of these broadest phenotypes, which may involve multiple factors preventing the clear detection of a major effect with Mendelian transmission. However, segregation of a Mendelian recessive major gene was detected for one SRA sub-phenotype, the IgE response to a single allergen, Timothy grass pollen, measured by the RAST test. Identification of a specific SRA phenotype controlled by a major gene may have important implications for further linkage studies.

Original publication




Journal article


Genet Epidemiol

Publication Date





305 - 315


Adolescent, Adult, Allergens, Antibody Formation, Antibody Specificity, Australia, Child, Chromosome Segregation, Family Health, Female, Genes, Recessive, Humans, Immunoglobulin E, Male, Phenotype, Poaceae, Pollen