Detection and identification of a soy protein component that cross-reacts with caseins from cow's milk

Clin Exp Immunol. 2002 Oct;130(1):49-58. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2249.2002.t01-1-01935.x.


Soy-based formulas are the most employed cow's milk substitutes in the treatment of cow's milk allergy in our country. Since adverse reactions have been reported in allergic patients as a consequence of exposure to soy proteins, we have investigated the possible cross-reactivity between components from soybean and cow's milk. A cow's milk specific polyclonal antiserum and casein specific monoclonal antibodies were used in immunoblotting and competitive ELISA studies to identify a 30-kD component from soybean that cross-reacts with cow's milk caseins. Its IgE binding capacity was tested by EAST, employing sera from cow's milk allergic patients, not previously exposed to soy proteins. The 30 kD protein was isolated and partially sequenced. It is constituted by two polypeptides (A5 and B3) linked by a disulphide bond. The protein's capacity to bind to the different antibodies relies on the B3 poly-peptide. These results indicate that soy-based formula, which contains the A5-B3 glycinin molecule, could be involved in allergic reactions observed in cow's milk allergic patients exposed to soy-containing foods.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Allergens / chemistry
  • Allergens / immunology*
  • Animals
  • Antibody Specificity
  • Caseins / immunology*
  • Cattle
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cross Reactions
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Glycine max / chemistry
  • Glycine max / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoblotting
  • Immunoglobulin E / blood
  • Immunoglobulin E / immunology
  • Infant
  • Infant Food / adverse effects*
  • Milk Hypersensitivity / blood
  • Milk Hypersensitivity / immunology*
  • Molecular Weight
  • Plant Proteins / chemistry
  • Plant Proteins / immunology
  • Plant Proteins / isolation & purification*
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Sequence Analysis, Protein
  • Soybean Proteins / chemistry
  • Soybean Proteins / immunology
  • Soybean Proteins / isolation & purification*


  • A5-B3 glycinin, soybean
  • Allergens
  • Caseins
  • Plant Proteins
  • Soybean Proteins
  • Immunoglobulin E