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    ABSTRACT: Fish is a common trigger of severe, food-allergic reactions. Only a limited number of proteins induce specific IgE-mediated immune reactions. The major fish allergens are the parvalbumins. They are members of the calcium-binding EF-hand protein family characterized by a conserved protein structure. They represent highly cross-reactive allergens for patients with specific IgE to conserved epitopes. These patients might experience clinical reactions with various fish species. On the other hand, some individuals have IgE antibodies directed against unique, species-specific parvalbumin epitopes, and these patients show clinical symptoms only with certain fish species. Furthermore, different parvalbumin isoforms and isoallergens are present in the same fish and might display variable allergenicity. This was shown for salmon homologs, where only a single parvalbumin (beta-1) isoform was identified as allergen in specific patients. In addition to the parvalbumins, several other fish proteins, enolases, aldolases, and fish gelatin, seem to be important allergens. New clinical and molecular insights advanced the knowledge and understanding of fish allergy in the last years. These findings were useful for the advancement of the IgE-based diagnosis and also for the management of fish allergies consisting of advice and treatment of fish-allergic patients.
    Frontiers in Immunology 01/2014; 5:179.
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    ABSTRACT: Food allergy and seafood (fish, mollusk, and crustacean) consumption have increased considerably over the past 40 years. Seafood allergy is now a leading cause of anaphylaxis in both the United States and Australia. However, there is only limited published data describing the clinical presentation and management of seafood allergy. To describe the characteristics of a large cohort of children with seafood allergy. Using a retrospective chart review, we collected data on all children presenting to our Tertiary Allergy Service with an allergic reaction to seafood between 2006 and 2009. 167 children had a history of definite clinical reaction to seafood and/or positive food challenge (103 male, 62%). 94% had evidence of co-existent atopic disease. Prawn/shrimp was the most common seafood implicated. One-fifth presented with a history of anaphylaxis to seafood. Over 50% of crustacean-allergic children could tolerate non-crustacean fish. Sensitization to other fish species was very common in fish-allergic children, with one third reporting clinical reactions to at least two species; 16% developed symptoms to fish vapours. In children with allergy to tuna and/or salmon, at least 21% were able to tolerate the fish in a tinned form. Seafood is a relatively common and important cause of food allergy in Australian children, presenting with a high rate of anaphylaxis.
    Annals of allergy, asthma & immunology: official publication of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology 06/2011; 106(6):494-501. · 3.45 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Global increased demand for seafood and its products has been associated with a concomitant rise in fishing, aquaculture, and processing activities. This increased harvesting of seafood is associated with more frequent reporting of allergic health problems among seafood processors. This review outlines the high-risk working populations, work processes, as well as host and environmental exposure risk factors for occupational respiratory and skin allergies. It also provides insights into the major and minor allergens as well as the pathophysiological mechanisms implicated. Diagnostic and preventive approaches are outlined in managing work-related allergy associated with seafood processing.
    Advances in food and nutrition research 01/2012; 66:47-73.