Food allergen protein families and their structural characteristics and application in component-resolved diagnosis: new data from the EuroPrevall project

Anal Bioanal Chem. 2009 Sep;395(1):25-35. doi: 10.1007/s00216-009-2953-z. Epub 2009 Jul 30.


A large number of food allergens able to induce allergic symptoms in predisposed individuals, including severe, even life-threatening reactions, have been identified and characterized. However, proteins able to cause such IgE-mediated reactions can be assigned to only a limited number of protein families. Detailed knowledge about the characteristics of food allergens, their 3D structures, biological activity and stability, will help to improve diagnosis of food allergy, avoid unnecessary exclusion diets and assess the risk of cross-reactive allergies to other food sources. This review is dedicated to summarizing current knowledge about the most important food allergen protein families and to presenting data from the EuroPrevall allergen library, a proof-of-concept collection of highly purified, characterized and authenticated food allergens from animal and plant food sources to facilitate improved diagnosis of food allergies.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Allergens / chemistry*
  • Animals
  • Antigens, Plant
  • Food Hypersensitivity / diagnosis
  • Food Hypersensitivity / etiology
  • Food Hypersensitivity / immunology
  • Humans
  • Proteins / immunology*


  • Allergens
  • Antigens, Plant
  • Proteins