Fifty years of allergy: 1965–2015

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Abstract

The last 50 years in allergy could almost be considered the first 50 years. Over this time period, we have witnessed the emergence of allergy as a subspecialty, have seen and continue to observe a tremendous change in prevalence of allergic disease and have gained insight into the mechanisms that underlie allergic predisposition and disease manifestation. We have improved the care of children with many forms of allergic disease and now sit poised to be able to alter the natural history of allergic disease with the use of specific immunotherapy. There is much left to do in the next 50 years including understanding what underlies both the predisposition to atopic disease and its natural resolution and identifying the environmental cofactors involved in the ‘allergic epidemic’ and therefore targets for effective primary prevention.

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