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Special Issue "Environmental and Food Allergy"

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A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2011)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. S. Hasan Arshad (Website)

Infection Inflammation & Immunity, School of Medicine, The University of Southampton, Tremona Road,Southampton, Hampshire, SO16 6YD, UK

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Allergic diseases, including asthma, eczema, allergic rhinitis and food allergy now affect up to one in three adults and one in two children in economically developed countries. These conditions are responsible for appreciable morbidity and costs, both to people and to the state. The prevalence of these disorders has increased in prevalence in recent decades pointing towards the causal role of exposure to food and environmental factors in early life. Evidence is accumulating that changing patterns of exposure to food and environmental allergens and infections is driving this increase. Common indoor allergens include house dust mite, cockroach, animal dander, and certain moulds, while common food allergens include cows’ milk, hens’ egg, nuts and fish/shellfish. Other environmental factors of importance are infections, endotoxins and pollutants such as cigarette smoke. However, the dose, the duration, the route and the timing of exposures resulting in environmental and food allergy is not clear. Understanding the role of these factors and how they influence immune responses in early childhood is critical to developing and evaluating early life interventions.

This special issue focuses on the role of exposure to environmental factors and food allegens in the development of allergic diseases

S. Hasan Arshad
Guest Editor

Keywords

  • allergy
  • food allergy
  • environment
  • risk factors
  • prevention
  • genetics
  • gene-environment interactions
  • cohort studies
  • clinical trials

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Severe Allergic Reactions to Food in Norway: A Ten Year Survey of Cases Reported to the Food Allergy Register
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(8), 3144-3155; doi:10.3390/ijerph8083144
Received: 25 May 2011 / Revised: 15 July 2011 / Accepted: 18 July 2011 / Published: 26 July 2011
Cited by 17 | PDF Full-text (204 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Norwegian Food Allergy Register was established at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health in 2000. The purpose of the register is to gain information about severe allergic reactions to food in Norway and to survey food products in relation to allergen [...] Read more.
The Norwegian Food Allergy Register was established at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health in 2000. The purpose of the register is to gain information about severe allergic reactions to food in Norway and to survey food products in relation to allergen labelling and contamination. Cases are reported on a voluntary basis by first line doctors, and submitted together with a serum sample for specific IgE analysis. The register has received a total of 877 reports from 1 July, 2000 to 31 December, 2010. Two age groups, small children and young adults are over-represented, and the overall gender distribution is 40:60 males-females. The legumes lupine and fenugreek have been identified as two “new” allergens in processed foods and cases of contamination and faults in production of processed foods have been revealed. The highest frequency of food specific IgE is to hazelnuts and peanuts, with a marked increase in reactions to hazelnuts during the last three years. The Food Allergy Register has improved our knowledge about causes and severity of food allergic reactions in Norway. The results show the usefulness of population based national food allergy registers in providing information for health authorities and to secure safe food for individuals with food allergies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental and Food Allergy)
Open AccessArticle Pulsed Ultraviolet Light Reduces Immunoglobulin E Binding to Atlantic White Shrimp (Litopenaeus setiferus) Extract
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(7), 2569-2583; doi:10.3390/ijerph8072569
Received: 18 May 2011 / Accepted: 19 June 2011 / Published: 24 June 2011
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (1336 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Pulsed ultraviolet light (PUV), a novel food processing and preservation technology, has been shown to reduce allergen levels in peanut and soybean samples. In this study, the efficacy of using PUV to reduce the reactivity of the major shrimp allergen, tropomyosin (36-kDa), [...] Read more.
Pulsed ultraviolet light (PUV), a novel food processing and preservation technology, has been shown to reduce allergen levels in peanut and soybean samples. In this study, the efficacy of using PUV to reduce the reactivity of the major shrimp allergen, tropomyosin (36-kDa), and to attenuate immunoglobulin E (IgE) binding to shrimp extract was examined. Atlantic white shrimp (Litopenaeus setiferus) extract was treated with PUV (3 pulses/s, 10 cm from light source) for 4 min. Tropomyosin was compared in the untreated, boiled, PUV-treated and [boiled+PUV]-treated samples, and changes in the tropomyosin levels were determined by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). IgE binding of the treated extract was analyzed via immunoblot and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) using pooled human plasma containing IgE antibodies against shrimp allergens. Results showed that levels of tropomyosin and IgE binding were reduced following PUV treatment. However, boiling increased IgE binding, while PUV treatment could offset the increased allergen reactivity caused by boiling. In conclusion, PUV treatment reduced the reactivity of the major shrimp allergen, tropomyosin, and decreased the IgE binding capacity of the shrimp extract. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental and Food Allergy)

Review

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Open AccessReview The Search for Reliable Biomarkers of Disease in Multiple Chemical Sensitivity and Other Environmental Intolerances
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(7), 2770-2797; doi:10.3390/ijerph8072770
Received: 11 April 2011 / Revised: 10 June 2011 / Accepted: 27 June 2011 / Published: 1 July 2011
Cited by 21 | PDF Full-text (286 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Whilst facing a worldwide fast increase of food and environmental allergies, the medical community is also confronted with another inhomogeneous group of environment-associated disabling conditions, including multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, electric hypersensitivity, amalgam disease and others. These share [...] Read more.
Whilst facing a worldwide fast increase of food and environmental allergies, the medical community is also confronted with another inhomogeneous group of environment-associated disabling conditions, including multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, electric hypersensitivity, amalgam disease and others. These share the features of poly-symptomatic multi-organ cutaneous and systemic manifestations, with postulated inherited/acquired impaired metabolism of chemical/physical/nutritional xenobiotics, triggering adverse reactions at exposure levels far below toxicologically-relevant values, often in the absence of clear-cut allergologic and/or immunologic involvement. Due to the lack of proven pathogenic mechanisms generating measurable disease biomarkers, these environmental hypersensitivities are generally ignored by sanitary and social systems, as psychogenic or “medically unexplained symptoms”. The uncontrolled application of diagnostic and treatment protocols not corresponding to acceptable levels of validation, safety, and clinical efficacy, to a steadily increasing number of patients demanding assistance, occurs in many countries in the absence of evidence-based guidelines. Here we revise available information supporting the organic nature of these clinical conditions. Following intense research on gene polymorphisms of phase I/II detoxification enzyme genes, so far statistically inconclusive, epigenetic and metabolic factors are under investigation, in particular free radical/antioxidant homeostasis disturbances. The finding of relevant alterations of catalase, glutathione-transferase and peroxidase detoxifying activities significantly correlating with clinical manifestations of MCS, has recently registered some progress towards the identification of reliable biomarkers of disease onset, progression, and treatment outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental and Food Allergy)
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