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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1998 Jul;102(1):127-33.

Class I chitinases with hevein-like domain, but not class II enzymes, are relevant chestnut and avocado allergens.

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  • 1Departamento de Biotecnología, E.T.S. Ingenieros Agrónomos, Madrid, Spain.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Several foods associated with the latex-fruit syndrome present relevant allergens of around 30 kd. Neither these components nor any other responsible for the reported cross-reactions have been identified and purified.

OBJECTIVE:

We sought to isolate and characterize the 30 kd allergens from avocado fruit and chestnut seed, two of the main allergenic foods linked with latex allergy.

METHODS:

Sera from patients allergic to chestnut and avocado were selected according to clinical symptoms, specific IgE levels, and positive skin prick test responses. Class I and II chitinases were purified by affinity and cation-exchange chromatography and characterized by specific IgE and anti-chitinase immunodetection, immunoblot inhibition assays, enzymatic activity tests, and N-terminal sequencing.

RESULTS:

Relevant 32 kd allergens were detected by specific IgE immunodetection in both avocado and chestnut crude extracts. The same bands, together with others of 25 kd, were revealed by a monospecific antiserum against class II chitinases. Purification and characterization of the 32 kd allergens from both plant sources allowed their identification as class I chitinases with an N-terminal hevein-domain. The purified allergens fully inhibited IgE binding by the corresponding crude extract when tested in immunoblot inhibition assays. Highly related 25 kd class II chitinases that lack the hevein-like domain were also isolated from the same protein preparations. No IgE-binding capacity was shown by these class II enzymes.

CONCLUSION:

Class I chitinases are relevant allergens of avocado and chestnut and could be the panallergens responsible for the latex-fruit syndrome. The hevein-like domain seems to be involved in their allergenic reactivity.

PMID:
9679856
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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