Climate change and air pollution, including ozone is known to affect plants and might also influence the ragweed pollen, known to carry strong allergens. We compared the transcriptome of ragweed pollen produced under ambient and elevated ozone by 454-sequencing. An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was carried out for the major ragweed allergen Amb a 1. Pollen surface was examined by scanning electron microscopy and attenuated total reflectance–Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), and phenolics were analysed by high-performance liquid chromatography. Elevated ozone had no influence on the pollen size, shape, surface structure or amount of phenolics. ATR-FTIR indicated increased pectin-like material in the exine. Transcriptomic analyses showed changes in expressed-sequence tags (ESTs), including allergens. However, ELISA indicated no significantly increased amounts of Amb a 1 under elevated ozone concentrations. The data highlight a direct influence of ozone on the exine components and transcript level of allergens. As the total protein amount of Amb a 1 was not altered, a direct correlation to an increased risk to human health could not be derived. Additional, the 454-sequencing contributes to the identification of stress-related transcripts in mature pollen that could be grouped into distinct gene ontology terms.