Low molecular weight glutenins in wheat-dependant, exercise-induced anaphylaxis: allergenicity and antigenic relationships with omega 5-gliadins

Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 2010;153(1):35-45. doi: 10.1159/000301577. Epub 2010 Mar 31.


Background: Adults suffering from wheat-dependant, exercise-induced anaphylaxis (WDEIA) develop IgE directed against wheat omega5-gliadins (major allergens for this allergy) and against wheat low-molecular weight glutenin subunits (LMW-GS). However, the ability of LMW-GS to trigger an inflammatory response is still unknown. It also remains to be determined if IgE from these patients bind the same epitopes on LMW-GS and omega5-gliadins or if the epitopes are independent.

Methods: WDEIA patients were selected and skin prick tests (SPTs) were performed on them using commercial gluten, wheat flour extracts, prolamin fractions and a purified natural LMW-GS P42. The IgE-binding ability of natural and recombinant wheat prolamins was verified by immunoblot experiments. Cross-reactivity between LMW-GS and omega5-gliadins was studied by immunoblot inhibition experiments, using purified natural omega5-gliadin as an inhibitor.

Results: Patients developed positive SPTs with natural LMW-GS fractions and/or with the purified LMW-GS P42. Natural and recombinant LMW-GS were highly reactive with patient IgE in immunoblot experiments, as was omega5-gliadin. However, differences in reactivity were evident within the LMW-GS group. Except for one recombinant LMW-GS (P73), IgE cross-reactivity between LMW-GS and natural omega5-gliadin was only partial.

Conclusion: LMW-GS are able to promote local inflammation and they share common epitopes with omega5-gliadins. The nature of these epitopes is discussed. LMW-GS also carried specific epitopes, completely independent from the omega5-gliadin epitopes. Thus, LMW-GS behaved partly as independent allergens.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Allergens / adverse effects
  • Allergens / immunology
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Anaphylaxis* / etiology
  • Anaphylaxis* / immunology
  • Antigens / immunology
  • Bridged Bicyclo Compounds, Heterocyclic
  • Cross Reactions
  • Exercise*
  • Gliadin / adverse effects
  • Gliadin / chemistry
  • Gliadin / genetics
  • Gliadin / immunology*
  • Glutens / adverse effects
  • Glutens / chemistry
  • Glutens / genetics
  • Glutens / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin E / metabolism
  • Middle Aged
  • Piperidines
  • Recombinant Proteins / chemistry
  • Recombinant Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins / immunology
  • Skin Tests
  • Triticum / immunology
  • Wheat Hypersensitivity / immunology*
  • Young Adult


  • Allergens
  • Antigens
  • Bridged Bicyclo Compounds, Heterocyclic
  • MOL 6131
  • Piperidines
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Immunoglobulin E
  • Glutens
  • Gliadin
  • glutenin