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Special Issue "Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy"

A special issue of Nutrients (ISSN 2072-6643).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Linda Monaci

Natl Res Council Italy ISPA CNR, Inst Sci Food Prod, Via Amendola 122-O, I-70126 Bari, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +390805929343
Interests: food allergens; bacteria; intestinal microbiota; mycotoxins; proteomics
Guest Editor
Prof. Clare Mills

Manchester Institute of Biotechnology, University of Manchester,131 Princess Street, Manchester M1 7DN, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: food allergy; gastrointestinal; gluten; food safety; clinical immunology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Food allergy represents a food safety issue with an increasing recorded prevalence worldwide, making this field of primary importance for clinicians, as well as for the food industry. The role of diet and nutrition is of paramount importance in the development of the allergic disease along with the protective role exerted by micronutrients and probiotics in modulating the power of allergic reactions. Alongside, the effect of food matrix, technological treatments and human digestion also deserve attention on the possible influence on the final allergenicity of a food. This Special Issue of Nutrients entitled “Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy” aims to collect contributions focused on food allergy, evaluating the influence of the diet on the incidence of food allergies also placing emphasis on simulated digestion protocols applied to allergenic foods to illustrate the advances made in this field so far not deeply investigated. Manuscripts either original research papers or review articles addressing food allergy are welcome and are expected to cover one of these three aspects:

  1. Epidemiological evidence/role of diet and nutrition on the allergic disease
  2. The role for micronutrients and probiotics in modulating food allergies
  3. The influence of food matrix, technological treatments and bioaccessibility along the gastro-intestinal tract on food allergy

Dr. Linda Monaci
Prof. Clare Mills
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Nutrients is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Food allergy
  • Gastrointestinal
  • Allergic disease
  • Gastro-intestinal tract
  • Diet

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

Open AccessArticle Mouse Chow Composition Influences Immune Responses and Food Allergy Development in a Mouse Model
Nutrients 2018, 10(11), 1775; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10111775
Received: 28 September 2018 / Revised: 6 November 2018 / Accepted: 7 November 2018 / Published: 16 November 2018
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Abstract
Our diet is known to substantially influence the immune response not only by support of mucosal barriers but also via direct impact on immune cells. Thus, it was of great interest to compare the immunological effect of two mouse chows with substantial differences
[...] Read more.
Our diet is known to substantially influence the immune response not only by support of mucosal barriers but also via direct impact on immune cells. Thus, it was of great interest to compare the immunological effect of two mouse chows with substantial differences regarding micro-, macronutrient, lipid and vitamin content on the food allergic response in our previously established mouse model. As the two mouse chows of interest, we used a soy containing feed with lower fatty acid (FA) amount (soy-containing feed) and compared it to a soy free mouse chow (soy-free feed) in an established protocol of oral immunizations with Ovalbumin (OVA) under gastric acid suppression. In the animals receiving soy-containing feed, OVA-specific IgE, IgG1, IgG2a antibody levels were significantly elevated and food allergy was evidenced by a drop of body temperature after oral immunizations. In contrast, mice on soy-free diet had significantly higher levels of IL-10 and were protected from food allergy development. In conclusion, soy-containing feed was auxiliary during sensitizations, while soy-free feed supported oral tolerance development and food allergy prevention. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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Open AccessArticle Heat and Pressure Treatments on Almond Protein Stability and Change in Immunoreactivity after Simulated Human Digestion
Nutrients 2018, 10(11), 1679; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10111679
Received: 28 September 2018 / Revised: 29 October 2018 / Accepted: 31 October 2018 / Published: 5 November 2018
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Abstract
Almond is consumed worldwide and renowned as a valuable healthy food. Despite this, it is also a potent source of allergenic proteins that can trigger several mild to life-threatening immunoreactions. Food processing proved to alter biochemical characteristics of proteins, thus affecting the respective
[...] Read more.
Almond is consumed worldwide and renowned as a valuable healthy food. Despite this, it is also a potent source of allergenic proteins that can trigger several mild to life-threatening immunoreactions. Food processing proved to alter biochemical characteristics of proteins, thus affecting the respective allergenicity. In this paper, we investigated the effect of autoclaving, preceded or not by a hydration step, on the biochemical and immunological properties of almond proteins. Any variation in the stability and immunoreactivity of almond proteins extracted from the treated materials were evaluated by total protein quantification, Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA), and protein profiling by electrophoresis-based separation (SDS-PAGE). The sole autoclaving applied was found to weakly affect almond protein stability, despite what was observed when hydration preceded autoclaving, which resulted in a loss of approximately 70% of total protein content compared to untreated samples, and a remarkable reduction of the final immunoreactivity. The final SDS-PAGE protein pattern recorded for hydrated and autoclaved almonds disclosed significant changes. In addition, the same samples were further submitted to human-simulated gastro-intestinal (GI) digestion to evaluate potential changes induced by these processing methods on allergen digestibility. Digestion products were identified by High Pressure Liquid Chromatography-High Resolution Tandem Mass Spectrometry (HPLC-HRMS/MS) analysis followed by software-based data mining, and complementary information was provided by analyzing the proteolytic fragments lower than 6 kDa in size. The autoclave-based treatment was found not to alter the allergen digestibility, whereas an increased susceptibility to proteolytic action of digestive enzymes was observed in almonds subjected to autoclaving of prehydrated almond kernels. Finally, the residual immunoreactivity of the GI-resistant peptides was in-silico investigated by bioinformatic tools. Results obtained confirm that by adopting both approaches, no epitopes associated with known allergens survived, thus demonstrating the potential effectiveness of these treatments to reduce almond allergenicity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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Open AccessArticle Legume Protein Consumption and the Prevalence of Legume Sensitization
Nutrients 2018, 10(10), 1545; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10101545
Received: 18 September 2018 / Revised: 16 October 2018 / Accepted: 17 October 2018 / Published: 19 October 2018
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Abstract
Sensitization and allergy to legumes can be influenced by different factors, such as exposure, geographical background, and food processing. Sensitization and the allergic response to legumes differs considerably, however, the reason behind this is not yet fully understood. The aim of this study
[...] Read more.
Sensitization and allergy to legumes can be influenced by different factors, such as exposure, geographical background, and food processing. Sensitization and the allergic response to legumes differs considerably, however, the reason behind this is not yet fully understood. The aim of this study is to investigate if there is a correlation between legume protein consumption and the prevalence of legume sensitization. Furthermore, the association between sensitization to specific peanut allergens and their concentration in peanut is investigated. Legume sensitization data (peanut, soybean, lupin, lentil, and pea) from studies were analyzed in relation to consumption data obtained from national food consumption surveys using the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Global Environment Monitoring System (GEMS), and What We Eat in America—Food Commodity Intake Database (WWEIA-FCID) databases. Data were stratified for children <4 years, children 4–18 years, and adults. Sufficient data were available for peanut to allow for statistical analysis. Analysis of all age groups together resulted in a low correlation between peanut sensitization and relative peanut consumption (r = 0.407), absolute peanut consumption (r = 0.468), and percentage of peanut consumers (r = 0.243). No correlation was found between relative concentrations of Ara h 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, and 8 in peanut and sensitization to these peanut allergens. The results indicate that the amount of consumption only plays a minor role in the prevalence of sensitization to peanut. Other factors, such as the intrinsic properties of the different proteins, processing, matrix, frequency, timing and route of exposure, and patient factors might play a more substantial role in the prevalence of peanut sensitization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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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
Nutrients 2018, 10(9), 1281; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10091281
Received: 25 June 2018 / Revised: 28 August 2018 / Accepted: 31 August 2018 / Published: 11 September 2018
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Abstract
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
[...] Read more.
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. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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Open AccessArticle Effect of the Strawberry Genotype, Cultivation and Processing on the Fra a 1 Allergen Content
Nutrients 2018, 10(7), 857; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10070857
Received: 16 May 2018 / Revised: 12 June 2018 / Accepted: 28 June 2018 / Published: 2 July 2018
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Abstract
Birch pollen allergic patients show cross-reactivity to vegetables and fruits, including strawberries (Fragaria × ananassa). The objective of this study was to quantify the level of the Fra a 1 protein, a Bet v 1-homologous protein in strawberry fruits by a
[...] Read more.
Birch pollen allergic patients show cross-reactivity to vegetables and fruits, including strawberries (Fragaria × ananassa). The objective of this study was to quantify the level of the Fra a 1 protein, a Bet v 1-homologous protein in strawberry fruits by a newly developed ELISA, and determine the effect of genotype, cultivation and food processing on the allergen amount. An indirect competitive ELISA using a specific polyclonal anti-Fra a 1.02 antibody was established and revealed high variability in Fra a 1 levels within 20 different genotypes ranging from 0.67 to 3.97 µg/g fresh weight. Mature fruits of red-, white- and yellow-fruited strawberry cultivars showed similar Fra a 1 concentrations. Compared to fresh strawberries, oven and solar-dried fruits contained slightly lower levels due to thermal treatment during processing. SDS-PAGE and Western blot analysis demonstrated degradation of recombinant Fra a 1.02 after prolonged (>10 min) thermal treatment at 99 °C. In conclusion, the genotype strongly determined the Fra a 1 quantity in strawberries and the color of the mature fruits does not relate to the amount of the PR10-protein. Cultivation conditions (organic and conventional farming) do not affect the Fra a 1 level, and seasonal effects were minor. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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Open AccessArticle Immunological Comparison of Native and Recombinant Hen’s Egg Yolk Allergen, Chicken Serum Albumin (Gal d 5), Produced in Kluveromyces lactis
Nutrients 2018, 10(6), 757; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10060757
Received: 17 May 2018 / Revised: 5 June 2018 / Accepted: 8 June 2018 / Published: 12 June 2018
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Abstract
Chicken serum albumin (CSA) is a hen’s egg yolk allergen causing IgE-mediated allergy. The objective of this study was to produce a recombinant version of CSA and compare its IgE reactivity to natural CSA (nCSA). CSA was cloned and expressed as a soluble
[...] Read more.
Chicken serum albumin (CSA) is a hen’s egg yolk allergen causing IgE-mediated allergy. The objective of this study was to produce a recombinant version of CSA and compare its IgE reactivity to natural CSA (nCSA). CSA was cloned and expressed as a soluble fraction in the yeast Kluyveromyces lactis (K. lactis) protein expression system. The gene encoding CSA was amplified with a C-terminal hemagglutinin epitope tag by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and cloned into the pKLAC2 expression vector prior to transforming into K. lactis. Recombinant CSA (rCSA) was purified by immunoprecipitation. Twenty-one patients allergic to hen’s egg white were examined for sensitisation against nCSA. 38% of patients were found to be sensitised to CSA based on Western immunoassay. Immunoglobulin E (IgE) binding capacity of rCSA and nCSA was analysed by ELISA using sera from patients sensitised to CSA. Levels of IgE-binding were similar for both the recombinant and the natural CSA, indicating the existence of similar epitopes. rCSA produced in this study is a potential candidate to be used in component-resolved diagnosis (CRD) of egg yolk allergy. The usefulness of rCSA in CRD of egg yolk allergy warrants further characterisation using sera from patients with allergy to hen’s egg yolk in future studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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Open AccessArticle Milk-Related Symptoms and Immunoglobulin E Reactivity in Swedish Children from Early Life to Adolescence
Nutrients 2018, 10(5), 651; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10050651
Received: 5 April 2018 / Revised: 1 May 2018 / Accepted: 1 May 2018 / Published: 21 May 2018
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Abstract
Cow’s milk often causes symptoms in infants. Whereas, some continue to experience symptoms through childhood, others become tolerant. Yet, the ages at which persistence and tolerance occur are less clear. Thus, we examined the age of onset and persistence of milk-related symptoms from
[...] Read more.
Cow’s milk often causes symptoms in infants. Whereas, some continue to experience symptoms through childhood, others become tolerant. Yet, the ages at which persistence and tolerance occur are less clear. Thus, we examined the age of onset and persistence of milk-related symptoms from early life to adolescence, and Immunoglobulin E (IgE) milk reactivity, focusing on gender differences in a large, population-based birth cohort. Overall, 20.0% (537/2985) of children, with a comparable gender distribution, had early life milk-related symptoms. At 16y, approximately 2% (62/2985) children had persistent symptoms and high milk IgE levels (e.g., median at 4 years: 1.5 kUA/L) that were beginning in early life. In contrast, 94% had transient symptoms and low median IgE levels (early life: 0.63 kUA/L, 8y: 0.72 kUA/L; 16 years: 1.1 kUA/L). Also, at 16 years, approximately 6% of females and 3% of males without any previously reported symptoms reported adolescent-onset of symptoms (p < 0.001). Such symptoms were almost exclusively gastrointestinal symptoms and were not associated with detectable IgE. In conclusion, early life milk-related symptoms are common, although most cases are transient by 16 years. Twice as many females vs. males report adolescent-onset symptoms, and particularly gastrointestinal symptoms. Children with persistent symptoms have both a higher prevalence and higher milk IgE levels, as compared to other phenotypes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Almond Allergy: An Overview on Prevalence, Thresholds, Regulations and Allergen Detection
Nutrients 2018, 10(11), 1706; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10111706
Received: 30 September 2018 / Revised: 31 October 2018 / Accepted: 5 November 2018 / Published: 8 November 2018
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Abstract
Food allergy has been on the increase for many years. The prevalence of allergy to different foods varies widely depending on type of food, frequency of consumption and geographic location. Data from the literature suggests that the prevalence of tree nut allergy is
[...] Read more.
Food allergy has been on the increase for many years. The prevalence of allergy to different foods varies widely depending on type of food, frequency of consumption and geographic location. Data from the literature suggests that the prevalence of tree nut allergy is of the order of 1% in the general population. Almond is one such tree nut that is frequently eaten in many parts of the world and represents a potential allergenic hazard. Given the need to label products that contain allergens, a number of different methods of direct and indirect detection have been developed. However, in the absence of population-based threshold data, and given that almond allergy is rare, the sensitivity of the required detection is unknown and thus aims as low as possible. Typically, this is less than 1 ppm, which matches the thresholds that have been shown for other allergens. This review highlights the lack of quantitative data on prevalence and thresholds for almonds, which is limiting progress in consumer protection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
Open AccessReview Dietary Interventions in Pollen-Related Food Allergy
Nutrients 2018, 10(10), 1520; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10101520
Received: 20 September 2018 / Revised: 10 October 2018 / Accepted: 12 October 2018 / Published: 16 October 2018
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Abstract
In practice, it remains unclear what the best dietary approach is in subjects with pollen-related food allergy (PRFA). Our objective was to evaluate the effect of (1) dietary avoidance advice, (2) oral immunotherapy (OIT), (3) (heat) processing, and (4) consumption of hypoallergenic cultivars
[...] Read more.
In practice, it remains unclear what the best dietary approach is in subjects with pollen-related food allergy (PRFA). Our objective was to evaluate the effect of (1) dietary avoidance advice, (2) oral immunotherapy (OIT), (3) (heat) processing, and (4) consumption of hypoallergenic cultivars on frequency, severity, and eliciting dose of pollen-related food allergic reactions. A systematic search was conducted in PubMed, Embase, and Cochrane. All studies performing an in vivo investigation of one of the four interventions in adults with PRFA were included. Each study was assessed for quality and validity. Available data on frequency, severity, and eliciting dose of allergic reactions were extracted. Ten studies matched the eligibility criteria. No studies were retrieved on dietary avoidance advice. Two studies (N = 92) on apple OIT reported that tolerance was induced in 63% and 81% of subjects. Four studies (total N = 116) focused on heat processing. Heating was found to completely eradicate symptoms in 15–71% of hazelnut allergic and 46% of celery allergic individuals. Four studies (N = 60) comparing low to high allergenic apple cultivars revealed that Santana (and possibly Elise) apples seemed to cause milder reactions than Golden Delicious. In the awareness that overall level of evidence was low, we conclude that OIT, heat processing, and hypoallergenic cultivars may diminish or completely prevent allergic reactions in some but not all subjects with PRFA. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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Open AccessReview The Effect of Digestion and Digestibility on Allergenicity of Food
Nutrients 2018, 10(9), 1129; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10091129
Received: 29 June 2018 / Revised: 3 August 2018 / Accepted: 13 August 2018 / Published: 21 August 2018
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Abstract
Food allergy prevalence numbers are still on the rise. Apart from environmental influences, dietary habits, food availability and life-style factors, medication could also play a role. For immune tolerance of food, several contributing factors ensure that dietary compounds are immunologically ignored and serve
[...] Read more.
Food allergy prevalence numbers are still on the rise. Apart from environmental influences, dietary habits, food availability and life-style factors, medication could also play a role. For immune tolerance of food, several contributing factors ensure that dietary compounds are immunologically ignored and serve only as source for energy and nutrient supply. Functional digestion along the gastrointestinal tract is essential for the molecular breakdown and a prerequisite for appropriate uptake in the intestine. Digestion and digestibility of carbohydrates and proteins thus critically affect the risk of food allergy development. In this review, we highlight the influence of amylases, gastric acid- and trypsin-inhibitors, as well as of food processing in the context of food allergenicity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Diet and Gastrointestinal Digestion to Food Allergy)
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