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Cells. 2019 Jul 2;8(7). pii: E667. doi: 10.3390/cells8070667.

Analysis of Allergen-Specific T Cell and IgE Reactivity to Different Preparations of Cow's Milk-Containing Food Extracts.

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Division of Pediatric Allergy & Immunology, Rady Children's Hospital San Diego, University of California, San Diego, CA 92123, USA.
Department of Medicine, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA.
La Jolla Institute for Immunology, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.
La Jolla Institute for Immunology, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.



cow's milk allergy (CM) is among the most common food allergies in young children and is often outgrown by adulthood. Prior to developing a tolerance to CM, a majority of CM-allergic children may tolerate extensively-heated CM. This study aims to characterize the IgE- and T cell-reactivity to unheated CM and the progressively more heated CM-containing foods.


CM-containing food extracts from muffin, baked cheese, custard and raw, pasteurized CM commercial extract were tested for skin prick test reactivity, IgE binding and T cell reactivity as assessed by IL-5 and IFNγ production.


the skin prick test (SPT) reactivity was significantly decreased to muffin extract compared to raw, pasteurized CM. Both IgE- and T-cell reactivity were readily detectable against food extracts from all forms of CM. Western blot analysis of IgE reactivity revealed variability between extracts that was protein-specific. T cell-reactivity was detected against all four extracts with no significant difference in IL-5 or IFNγ production between them.


our data indicate that despite reduced clinical reactivity, extracts from heated CM-containing foods retain immunogenicity when tested in vitro, particularly at the T cell level.


IgE; T cells; allergen extract; baked milk; cow’s milk allergy; extensively-heated milk

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