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Allergy caused by ingestion of zucchini (Cucurbita pepo): characterization of allergens and cross-reactivity to pollen and other foods.

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Allergy to zucchini (Cucurbita pepo), a member of the Cucurbitaceae family, has not previously been reported. We examined 4 patients complaining of allergic symptoms, such as oral allergy syndrome, nausea, diarrhea, or pruritus, after the intake of zucchini.

OBJECTIVE

After the confirmation of food allergy, we wanted to characterize zucchini allergens and examine possible cross-reactions to pollen and food.

METHODS

The patients underwent skin prick and prick-to-prick-testing with different allergens, including zucchini, latex, and birch, ragweed, and grass pollen. Moreover a double-blind, placebo-controlled, food challenge was performed to confirm food allergy. Total and specific serum IgE levels were determined by using CAP-FEIA and the enzyme allergosorbent test method (EAST), respectively. Proteins from zucchini reacting with patient IgE were detected by means of immunoblotting. To characterize cross-reacting IgE antibodies, immunoblot- and EAST-inhibition assays were carried out.

RESULTS

All patients in this study had positive reactions to zucchini both in prick-to-prick tests and double-blind, placebo-controlled, food challenges. Specific serum IgE levels to zucchini were found in all cases. In blot- and EAST-inhibition assays IgE from two patients revealed binding to zucchini profilin at about 15 kd. Furthermore, in two cases, including one of the profilin-positive patients, IgE directed against cross-reacting carbohydrate determinants was detected. For one patient, no cross-reacting IgE could be found, but IgE from this patient reacted strongly with a zucchini protein at 17 kd.

CONCLUSIONS

We report the first 4 cases of food allergy to zucchini. Zucchini allergens can cause systemic reactions and are at least partially heat stable. We suggest that allergy to zucchini can occur as a result of primary sensitization to zucchini, as well as to cross-reactions to the panallergen profilin and cross-reacting carbohydrate determinants.

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  • Publisher Full Text
  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    ,

    Paul-Ehrlich Institute, Department of Allergology, Langen, Germany.

    , , ,

    Source

    MeSH

    Administration, Oral
    Adolescent
    Adult
    Allergens
    Cross Reactions
    Cucurbitaceae
    Double-Blind Method
    Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
    Female
    Food Hypersensitivity
    Humans
    Immunoblotting
    Immunoglobulin E
    Male
    Middle Aged
    Placebos
    Pollen
    Rhinitis, Allergic, Seasonal

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article
    Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    10932084

    Citation

    Reindl, J, et al. "Allergy Caused By Ingestion of Zucchini (Cucurbita Pepo): Characterization of Allergens and Cross-reactivity to Pollen and Other Foods." The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, vol. 106, no. 2, 2000, pp. 379-85.
    Reindl J, Anliker MD, Karamloo F, et al. Allergy caused by ingestion of zucchini (Cucurbita pepo): characterization of allergens and cross-reactivity to pollen and other foods. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2000;106(2):379-85.
    Reindl, J., Anliker, M. D., Karamloo, F., Vieths, S., & Wüthrich, B. (2000). Allergy caused by ingestion of zucchini (Cucurbita pepo): characterization of allergens and cross-reactivity to pollen and other foods. The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 106(2), pp. 379-85.
    Reindl J, et al. Allergy Caused By Ingestion of Zucchini (Cucurbita Pepo): Characterization of Allergens and Cross-reactivity to Pollen and Other Foods. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2000;106(2):379-85. PubMed PMID: 10932084.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - Allergy caused by ingestion of zucchini (Cucurbita pepo): characterization of allergens and cross-reactivity to pollen and other foods. AU - Reindl,J, AU - Anliker,M D, AU - Karamloo,F, AU - Vieths,S, AU - Wüthrich,B, PY - 2000/8/10/pubmed PY - 2000/9/19/medline PY - 2000/8/10/entrez SP - 379 EP - 85 JF - The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology JO - J. Allergy Clin. Immunol. VL - 106 IS - 2 N2 - BACKGROUND: Allergy to zucchini (Cucurbita pepo), a member of the Cucurbitaceae family, has not previously been reported. We examined 4 patients complaining of allergic symptoms, such as oral allergy syndrome, nausea, diarrhea, or pruritus, after the intake of zucchini. OBJECTIVE: After the confirmation of food allergy, we wanted to characterize zucchini allergens and examine possible cross-reactions to pollen and food. METHODS: The patients underwent skin prick and prick-to-prick-testing with different allergens, including zucchini, latex, and birch, ragweed, and grass pollen. Moreover a double-blind, placebo-controlled, food challenge was performed to confirm food allergy. Total and specific serum IgE levels were determined by using CAP-FEIA and the enzyme allergosorbent test method (EAST), respectively. Proteins from zucchini reacting with patient IgE were detected by means of immunoblotting. To characterize cross-reacting IgE antibodies, immunoblot- and EAST-inhibition assays were carried out. RESULTS: All patients in this study had positive reactions to zucchini both in prick-to-prick tests and double-blind, placebo-controlled, food challenges. Specific serum IgE levels to zucchini were found in all cases. In blot- and EAST-inhibition assays IgE from two patients revealed binding to zucchini profilin at about 15 kd. Furthermore, in two cases, including one of the profilin-positive patients, IgE directed against cross-reacting carbohydrate determinants was detected. For one patient, no cross-reacting IgE could be found, but IgE from this patient reacted strongly with a zucchini protein at 17 kd. CONCLUSIONS: We report the first 4 cases of food allergy to zucchini. Zucchini allergens can cause systemic reactions and are at least partially heat stable. We suggest that allergy to zucchini can occur as a result of primary sensitization to zucchini, as well as to cross-reactions to the panallergen profilin and cross-reacting carbohydrate determinants. SN - 0091-6749 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/10932084/full_citation L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0091-6749(00)88693-5 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -