Food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis

J Dermatol Sci. 2007 Aug;47(2):109-17. doi: 10.1016/j.jdermsci.2007.03.004. Epub 2007 May 15.


Food-dependent exercise induced anaphylaxis (FDEIA) is a distinct form of food allergy induced by physical exercise. Symptoms are typically generalized urticaria and severe allergic reactions such as shock or hypotension. Whereas various food items are responsible for the development of FDEIA, wheat is reported to be the allergen with the highest frequency in Japan. Recently aspirin has been known to be an additional exacerbating factor. Skin tests and in vitro serum food-specific IgE assays are currently used, however their sensitivity and specificity are not always satisfactory. A challenge test consisting of ingestion of assumed food followed by intense physical exercise is the only reliable method to determine the causative food and to diagnose the disease. The challenge test is not always safe because in some cases the test induces an anaphylactic shock. So a reliable in vitro diagnostic method is necessary for the patients with FDEIA. We revealed that wheat omega-5 gliadin and high molecular weight glutenin subunit are major allergens in wheat-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis (WDEIA). A simultaneous detection of specific IgE to epitope sequences of both omega-5 gliadin and high molecular weight glutenin is found to achieve higher sensitivity and specificity compared with the in vitro serum food-specific IgE assays currently used for diagnosis of WDEIA. On the other hand, immunoreactive gliadins appeared in the sera of patients during the provocation test with both wheat-exercise and wheat-aspirin challenges in parallel with allergic symptoms. These findings suggest that FDEIA is IgE-mediated hypersensitivity reaction to foods and both exercise and aspirin facilitate allergen absorption from the gastrointestinal tract.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Allergens / genetics
  • Allergens / immunology
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Anaphylaxis / immunology*
  • Anaphylaxis / physiopathology*
  • Antigens, Plant
  • Exercise*
  • Food Hypersensitivity / immunology*
  • Food Hypersensitivity / physiopathology*
  • Gliadin / genetics
  • Gliadin / immunology
  • Glutens / genetics
  • Glutens / immunology
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data


  • Allergens
  • Antigens, Plant
  • omega-5 gliadin, wheat
  • Glutens
  • Gliadin
  • glutenin