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Trends Plant Sci. 2008 Jun;13(6):257-60. doi: 10.1016/j.tplants.2008.04.004. Epub 2008 May 6.

Genetic engineering for removing food allergens from plants.

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Plant Molecular Biology and Biotechnology Laboratory, Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Integrative Legume Research, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC 3010, Australia.


Genetic engineering has great potential for improving the safety of plant-based foods by eliminating allergenic components. A recent publication by Dodo et al. demonstrates that RNA interference can mediate the silencing of a major allergen protein from peanuts. Three additional papers (two by Le et al. and one by Lorenz et al.) report the removal of allergenic proteins from tomato fruits. This research highlights the potential for using genetically engineered hypoallergenic plants in a new approach to alleviating food allergy symptoms.

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