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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1976 Apr;57(4):302-9.

Detection of allergy to nuts by the radioallergosorbent test.

Abstract

The diagnosis of food allergy is often difficult to make by conventional means. Histories are frequently ambiguous, and skin testing is of dubious reliability because of the number of false-positive and false-negative reactions. We have evaluated the radioallergosorbent test (RAST) for the in vitro measurement of the specific IgE antibodies to nuts, including Brazil nut, almond, walnut, pecan, cashew, and the legume, peanut. Serums were obtained from 18 patients with a history of nut allergy and IgE level and specific IgE antibodies were measured. Thirteen of the 18 patients had significantly elevated IgE antibody (greater than twice control) to one or more of the allergens. Prausnitz-K├╝stner tests on selected serums in general corroborated the results of the in vitro studies. Five patients had RAST elevations to 2 or more nuts. As a group RAST-positive patients had elevated mean serum IgE levels and more severe clinical symptoms (p less than 0.01). The specificity and cross-reactivity of IgE antibodies to different nut antigens was investigated by RAST inhibition with serums from 5 patients having high levels of IgE antibody. In 4 patients no cross-reactivity between Brazil nut and peanut was found. In contrast, several nut extracts inhibited the reaction of pecan allergen with IgE antibodies. These results indicate that specific IgE antibodies can be measured by RAST in patients with nut allergy and the cross-reactivity of nut antigens can be investigated. RAST would appear to be most useful in confirming the diagnosis of nut hypersensitivity in children or in highly allergic patients in whom skin testing poses a risk of anaphylaxis.

PMID:
1262606
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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