oa Current Allergy & Clinical Immunology - 'Midnight anaphylaxis' to red meat in patients with alpha-gal sensitisation : a recent discovery in the food allergy world and a case report from South Africa : guest review

Volume 29, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1609-3607



A syndrome of delayed anaphylaxis to red meat, occurring in geographical 'clusters' initially identified in the United States, was first described in 2009. A few years later, this enigmatic anaphylactic reaction was ascribed to IgE antibodies to galactose-alpha-1,3-galactose (alphagal), an oligosaccharide, which is a major blood group substance in non-primate mammals. It appears that the predominant source of sensitisation to alpha-gal is bites from certain ticks. Since 2009, several hundreds to thousands of cases of delayed red-meat allergy have been described worldwide, but very few reports have come out of Africa. This case series describes 2 cases of an acquired form of delayed anaphylaxis to beef and mutton in patients who were subsequently found to be highly sensitised to alpha-gal, residing in the same region.

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