Cellulase is an enzyme, which is added to detergents in order to dissolve dirt as well as remove worn down fibres from the surface of textiles.
The EU generally considers enzymes to be potential respiratory allergens, which pose a work environment risk relative to causing allergies. The EU simultaneously, however, considers the risk ti be minimal relative to allergic reactions caused by ordinary consumer usage of enzyme-containing detergents etc.
Low concentrations of the enzyme may, therefore, be used in detergents, which have been certified by Asthma-Allergy Denmark.
The low concentrations equally ensure that inhalation due to dispensing, as well as residual concentrations of dissolved detergents after wash do not cause irritation or allergies.
A study from 2010 including data material from 15,765 people gathered over a 40 year period as well as a literature examination showed that 37 people had developed allergies towards enzymes (i.e. antibodies). There was not found symptoms or any direct linkage to laundry or detergent exposure. Most cases had risen before 1977 and thus with people, who had been exposed to high exposure concentrations. The clinical test showed that the occurrence of enzyme specific allergies in the general population is very rare (0.126% since 1977).