[Show abstract][Hide abstract] 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.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Food allergies and asthma are increasing worldwide. It is estimated that approximately 8% of children aged <3 years have food allergies. Foods can induce a variety of IgE-mediated, cutaneous, gastrointestinal, and respiratory reactions. The most common foods responsible for allergic reactions in children are egg, milk, peanut, soy, fish, shellfish, and tree nuts. Asthma alone as a manifestation of a food allergy is rare and atypical. Less than 5% of patients experience wheezing without cutaneous or gastrointestinal symptoms during a food challenge. In addition to acute respiratory symptoms, a food allergy may also induce airway hyper-responsiveness beyond the initial reaction. This process can occur in patients who do not demonstrate a decrease in lung function during the reaction. Inhalation of aerosolized food particles can cause respiratory symptoms in selected food-allergic individuals, particularly with fish and shellfish during cooking and aerosolization. However, this has not been demonstrated with the smelling of, or casual contact with, peanut butter. Rarely, food additives such as sulfating agents can cause respiratory reactions. This reaction occurs primarily in patients with underlying asthma, particularly in patients with more severe asthma. In contrast, there is no convincing evidence that tartrazine or monosodium glutamate can induce asthma responses. Although food-induced asthma is rare, it is common for patients and clinicians to perceive that food can trigger asthma. Avoidance of specific foods or additives has not been shown to improve asthma, even in patients who may perceive that a particular food worsens their asthma.
However, patients with underlying asthma are more likely to experience a fatal or near-fatal food reaction. Food reactions tend to be more severe or life threatening when they involve the respiratory tract. The presence of a food allergy is a risk factor for the future development of asthma, particularly for children with sensitization to egg protein.
The diagnosis of a food allergy includes skin or in vitro testing as an initial study when the history suggests food allergy. While negative testing generally rules out a food allergy, positive testing should be followed by a food-challenge procedure for a definitive diagnosis. The CAP-RAST FEIA (CAP-radioallergosorbent test [RAST] fluoroenzyme immunoasssay system [FEIA]) is an improved in vitro measure that in some cases may decrease the need for food challenges. However, similar to skin testing and the RAST, there is good sensitivity but poor specificity, such that specific challenges are often warranted.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Aerosolization of fish proteins during seafood processing has been identified as a potential route for allergic sensitization and occupational asthma among workers involved in high-risk activities. The aim of this study was to develop immunological assays for the quantification of aerosolized fish antigens in a fish-processing factory.
Polyclonal antibodies to the main fish species processed in the factory (anchovy and pilchard) were generated in rabbits and compared by ELISA inhibition assay and immunoblotting. These antisera were utilized to develop ELISA assays for the detection of fish antigens. The ELISA inhibition assays were evaluated by analyzing environmental air samples collected from three areas in a fish-processing factory: pilchard canning, fish meal production and lobster processing.
By immunoblotting, the rabbit polyclonal antibodies demonstrated IgG antibody binding patterns comparable with IgE antibodies of fish-sensitized patients, particularly in regard to the major fish allergens parvalbumins. The sensitivity of the fish-specific ELISA assays developed was 0.5 microg/ml. The ELISA inhibition assays were able to differentiate between the two different fish species of interest but did not recognize a crustacean species. Notable differences in exposure levels to canned pilchard and anchovy antigens were demonstrated in the three different working areas of the factory, with assays having a detection limit as low as 105 ng/m(3).
These ELISA-based assays are sensitive and specific to quantify differential exposure levels to fish antigens produced during fish processing, making it possible to investigate exposure-disease response relationships among workers in this industry.
International Archives of Allergy and Immunology 10/2005; 138(1):21-8. · 2.25 Impact Factor
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