oa Current Allergy & Clinical Immunology - Cross-reactivity of food allergens with latex - diagnostic and clinical implications : allergies in the workplace

Volume 20 Number 2
  • ISSN : 1609-3607



Considerable efforts have been undertaken to characterise the molecular features of Hevea brasiliensis latex allergens as a result of the high prevalence of latex allergy in well-defined risk groups such as health-care workers (HCW) and children with spina bifida (SB). Most of the latex allergens have been purified to homogeneity by conventional purification methods or by molecular cloning techniques. The clear advantage of recombinant proteins in contrast to native proteins is that it is possible to produce large-scale quantities at high reproducible quality. Several latex allergens have sequence homology to other allergens (like chitinases, enolase, profilin, patatin-like protein) while others are unique and do not share any similarity. Some of these allergens are responsible for the so called 'latex-fruit syndrome'. With the knowledge and use of the single allergens it is possible to improve the in vivo and in vitro diagnosis and establish a component-resolved diagnostic approach as prerequisite for specific immunotherapy strategies.

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