Allergy Asthma Immunol Res.  2020 Jan;12(1):110-124. 10.4168/aair.2020.12.1.110.

Reversal of Olfactory Disturbance in Allergic Rhinitis Related to OMP Suppression by Intranasal Budesonide Treatment

  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Inha University School of Medicine, Incheon, Korea.


We evaluated the severity of olfactory disturbance (OD) in the murine model of allergic rhinitis (AR) and local allergic rhinitis (LAR) in mice. We also investigated the therapeutic effect of an intranasal steroid on OD.
Forty BALB/c mice were divided into 5 groups (n = 8 for each). The control group was sensitized intraperitoneally (i.p.) and challenged intranasally (i.n.) with saline. Mice in the AR group got i.p. and i.n. ovalbumin (OVA) administration for AR induction. The LAR group was challenged i.n. with 1% OVA for inducing local nasal allergic inflammation, without inducing the systemic allergy. The OD group got an i.p. methimazole administration (75 mg/kg) to induce total destruction of olfactory mucosa. Mice in the intranasal budesonide group received i.n. budesonide (12.8 μg per time, 30 minutes after the i.n. OVA challenge) while using OVA to cause systemic allergies. We conducted a buried-food pellet test to functionally assess the degree of OD in each group by measuring the time taken until finding hidden food. We evaluated the damage to olfactory epithelium using histopathologic evaluation and compared the degree of olfactory marker protein (OMP) expression in olfactory epithelium using immunofluorescent staining.
Mice of the AR (81.3 ± 19.8 seconds) and LAR groups (66.2 ± 12.7 seconds) spent significantly more time to detect the pellets than the control group (35.6 ± 12.2 seconds, P < 0.01). After treatment, the intranasal budesonide group exhibited significantly better results (35.8 ± 11.9 seconds) compared with the AR and LAR groups (P < 0.01). The AR and LAR groups showed considerable olfactory epithelial damage and suppression of OMP expression compared with the control group. In the intranasal budesonide group, the olfactory lesions and OMP expression had improved substantially.
OD may be caused by olfactory epithelial damage and suppression of OMP expression in nasal allergic inflammation and could be reversed using an intranasal steroid.


Olfactory mucosa; olfaction disorders; ovalbumin; olfactory marker protein; steroids; allergic rhinitis; quality of life; odorants
Full Text Links
  • AAIR
export Copy
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
Similar articles
Copyright © 2021 by Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors. All rights reserved.     E-mail: