Exposure to airborne pollen, fungal allergens, and dust mite allergens is associated with the development of allergic rhinitis. Biologic function of allergens is considered to be a key determinant for allergenicity, and many clinically important allergens have been shown to possess enzymatic activity. It is proposed that by enabling allergens to breach the integrity of the airway epithelial barrier, proteolytic activity plays an adjuvant pro-allergic role influencing immunogenicity. In this review, current evidence regarding enzymatic activity of aeroallergens is described, and the potential role of aeroallergens in allergic rhinitis is discussed. Copyright © 2005 by Current Science Inc.