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Nonadverse effects on allergenicity of isopentenyltransferase-transformed broccoli.

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Department of Medical Research, Taichung Veterans General Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan.



Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) provide modern agriculture with improvements in efficiency and the benefits of enhanced food production; however, the potential impact of GMOs on human health has not yet been clarified.


To investigate the allergenicity of isopentenyltransferase (ipt)-transformed broccoli compared with non-GM broccoli.


Sera from allergic individuals were used to identify the allergenicity of GM and non-GM broccoli. Immunoglobulin (Ig) binding of different lines of GM and non-GM broccoli was identified using immunoblotting, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and the histamin release assay.


Positive reactions to broccoli (Brassica Oleracea) were observed in 7.02% of individuals. Specific IgE to broccoli and total IgE fro allergic individuals were well correlated. The different tests performed showed no significant differences in the allergenicity of conventionally raised and GM broccoli, indicating the absence of unexpected effects on allergenicity in ipt-transformed plants. Using Western blot analysis we detected heterogeneous IgE-reactive allergenic components in broccoli-allergic sera, but no significant differences between GM an non-GM broccoli were observed in serum from the same patients.


Our study demonstrates that there are no differences between GM (ipt-transformed) broccoli and non-GM broccoli, as determined by specific IgE in sera from broccoli-allergic patients. This indicates that there were no unexpected effects on allergenicity in this GM broccoli.

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