Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2007 Sep;120(3):518-25. Epub 2007 Aug 8.

Evolutionary biology of plant food allergens.

Author information

Department of Pathophysiology, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.


The majority of plant food allergens can be grouped into just 4 protein families. This review summarizes the evolutionary relationships of allergenic and nonallergenic members of these families. Proteins from the prolamin superfamily have been described in vascular plants. This superfamily contains several allergenic (2S albumins, nonspecific lipid transfer proteins, and cereal amylase and protease inhibitors) and nonallergenic (hybrid proline-rich proteins, cereal indolines, and alpha-globulins) member families. The cupin superfamily comprises numerous functionally highly diverse protein families from all groups of organisms. However, allergenicity within the cupins is confined to the vicilin and legumin seed storage proteins. Profilins are ubiquitous eukaryotic proteins that are nonallergenic, with the exception of profilins from flowering plants. Finally, the Bet v 1 superfamily contains the pathogenesis-related proteins 10 family, the family of major latex proteins and ripening-related proteins, the norcoclaurine synthases, and the cytokinin-binding proteins, with pathogenesis-related proteins 10 family members from certain taxa being the only allergenic members. The study of the distribution of allergenic and nonallergenic members of protein families will provide new insights into the evolution of allergenicity and the factors that make proteins allergenic.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center