Early-life environmental exposures associate with individual and cumulative allergic morbidity.

TitleEarly-life environmental exposures associate with individual and cumulative allergic morbidity.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsGabryszewski SJ, Dudley J, Grundmeier RW, Hill DA
JournalPediatr Allergy Immunol
Date Published2021 Feb 22
ISSN1399-3038
Abstract

Several early-life environmental factors have been associated with altered risk for the development and/or severity of individual allergic conditions. These include exposures implicated in the modulation of the microbiome, such as infant delivery mode, diet, and exposure to antibiotics and antacids. The impact of these early-life factors on allergic multimorbidity remains unknown. To address this knowledge gap, we used electronic medical records for a birth cohort of 158,510 children to track development of atopic dermatitis (AD), IgE-mediated food allergy (IgE-FA), asthma, and allergic rhinitis (AR) in individual children over time. We measured hazard ratios (HRs), adjusted for birth year, race, ethnicity, sex, and insurance payer type, to assess how development of both individual and multiple allergic conditions is influenced by birth mode, feeding practice during the first year of life, or exposure to antibiotics and/or antacids during the first six months of life. We found that vaginal delivery (VD; HR 0.89, 0.83, 0.84, 0.79 for at least 1, 2, 3, 4 conditions, respectively; p≤0.001) and exclusive breastmilk (BM) feeding (HR 0.74, 0.75, 0.89, for at least 1, 2, 3 conditions, respectively; p≤0.001) are associated with reduced cumulative allergic burden, while antibiotic exposure (HR 1.40, 1.44, 1.48, 1.63 for at least 1, 2, 3, 4 conditions, respectively; p≤0.001) and antacid exposure (HR 1.26, 1.35, 1.32 for at least 1, 2, 3 conditions, respectively; p≤0.001) are associated with increased cumulative allergic burden during childhood. This work expands our understanding of how a child's early-life environment may influence their risk of allergy development and progression.

DOI10.1111/pai.13486
Alternate JournalPediatr Allergy Immunol
PubMed ID33616233