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The Effect of Digestion and Digestibility on Allergenicity of Food
Open AccessArticle

Release of Major Peanut Allergens from Their Matrix under Various pH and Simulated Saliva Conditions—Ara h2 and Ara h6 Are Readily Bio-Accessible

Food Allergy Research and Resource Program, Department of Food Science & Technology, University of Nebraska, 279 Food Innovation Center, Lincoln, NE 68588-6207, USA
Research Group Innovative Testing in Life Sciences and Chemistry, University of Applied Sciences, Heidelberglaan 7, 3584 CS Utrecht, The Netherlands
Food & Biobased Research, Wageningen University and Research, Bornse Weilanden 9, P.O. Box 17, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands
TNO, Utrechtseweg 48, 3704 HE Zeist, The Netherlands
Department of Human Nutrition, Wageningen University and Research, Stippeneng 4, 6708 WE Wageningen, The Netherlands
Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicines, Utrecht University, Yalelaan 1, 3584 CL, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2018, 10(9), 1281;
Received: 25 June 2018 / Revised: 28 August 2018 / Accepted: 31 August 2018 / Published: 11 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
The oral mucosa is the first immune tissue that encounters allergens upon ingestion of food. We hypothesized that the bio-accessibility of allergens at this stage may be a key determinant for sensitization. Light roasted peanut flour was suspended at various pH in buffers mimicking saliva. Protein concentrations and allergens profiles were determined in the supernatants. Peanut protein solubility was poor in the pH range between 3 and 6, while at a low pH (1.5) and at moderately high pHs (>8), it increased. In the pH range of saliva, between 6.5 and 8.5, the allergens Ara h2 and Ara h6 were readily released, whereas Ara h1 and Ara h3 were poorly released. Increasing the pH from 6.5 to 8.5 slightly increased the release of Ara h1 and Ara h3, but the recovery remained low (approximately 20%) compared to that of Ara h2 and Ara h6 (approximately 100% and 65%, respectively). This remarkable difference in the extraction kinetics suggests that Ara h2 and Ara h6 are the first allergens an individual is exposed to upon ingestion of peanut-containing food. We conclude that the peanut allergens Ara h2 and Ara h6 are quickly bio-accessible in the mouth, potentially explaining their extraordinary allergenicity. View Full-Text
Keywords: peanut; Arachis hypogaea; allergen; bio-accessibility; saliva peanut; Arachis hypogaea; allergen; bio-accessibility; saliva
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Koppelman, S.J.; Smits, M.; Tomassen, M.; De Jong, G.A.; Baumert, J.; Taylor, S.L.; Witkamp, R.; Veldman, R.J.; Pieters, R.; Wichers, H. Release of Major Peanut Allergens from Their Matrix under Various pH and Simulated Saliva Conditions—Ara h2 and Ara h6 Are Readily Bio-Accessible. Nutrients 2018, 10, 1281.

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