ABSTRACT: Allergy to walnut is the most frequently reported tree nut allergy in the United States. Walnut 2S albumin, a vicilin-like protein, and a lipid transfer protein allergen have previously been described. Our objective was to clone and express a cDNA encoding a legumin group protein, assess IgE-binding with sera from walnut allergic patients, and investigate cross-reactivity with selected nuts. Primers were used to obtain the cDNA by 5' and 3' rapid amplification of cDNA ends from walnut mRNA. The cDNA was subcloned into the pMAL-c2X vector and the recombinant fusion protein, named rJug r 4, was expressed in Escherichia coli. The obtained cDNA encoded a precursor protein with a predicted molecular weight of 58.1 kD, which showed significant sequence homology to hazelnut and cashew legumin allergens. Serum IgE from 21 of 37 (57%) patients bound the rJug r 4 fusion protein. In vitro cross-reactivity was demonstrated with hazelnut, cashew, and peanut protein extracts.
Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 11/2006; 54(21):8369-75. · 2.82 Impact Factor