Back to overview

Eosinophilic esophagitis: unclear roles of IgE and eosinophils

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Blanchard C., Simon D., Schoepfer A., Straumann A., Simon H.-U.,
Project Defining clinically meaningful therapeutic endpoints in Eosinophilic Esophagitis
Show all

Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Journal of Internal Medicine
Volume (Issue) 281(5)
Page(s) 448 - 457
Title of proceedings Journal of Internal Medicine
DOI 10.1111/joim.12568


Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the oesophagus. Recognized as a distinct entity only two decades ago, the emergence of the disease along with the availability of new technologies has rapidly opened new research avenues and outlined the main features of the pathogenesis of EoE. Yet, each advance in our understanding of the disease has raised new questions about the previous consensus. Currently, new subsets of the disease challenge our diagnostic criteria. For instance, it was believed that EoE did not respond to proton pump inhibitor (PPI) therapy; however, it has now been shown that a substantial proportion of EoE patients indeed respond to PPIs. In addition, a new subset of patients not even presenting eosinophil infiltrates in the oesophagus has also been described. Moreover, approaches for better understanding the heritability of the disease bring into question the dogma of predominant genetic involvement. Furthermore, the specificity and sensitivity of allergy testing for targeted food avoidance is highly controversial, and the production of specific antibodies in EoE now includes IgG4 in addition to IgE. In conclusion, EoE is perceived as 'a moving target' and the aim of this review was to summarize the current understanding of EoE pathogenesis.