Allergic sensitisation to foods may occur in infancy without prior oral exposure to the offending food. This has led to the assumption that food allergy sensitisation may occur through alternative routes, such as via the skin. Recently, concern has been raised regarding the safety of use of cosmetic and personal care products containing food proteins and derivatives hereof, especially hydrolysed wheat proteins. However, little is known about the conditions necessary for proteins and their derivatives to sensitise via the skin. In this project we will develop an animal model for IgE mediated protein induced skin sensitisation. This will allow us to study the influences of: 1) protein/peptide sizes, 2) protein/peptide aggregation tendency, 3) matrices in which the proteins/peptides are present and 4) skin conditions, on the skin sensitising capacity of protein products. Intact wheat and different enzyme and acid hydrolysed wheat products, used in cosmetic and personal care products will be used as model proteins and applied on intact, damaged as well as inflamed skin, in order for examination of: 1) specific IgG1 and IgE antibody responses, according to: antibody levels, antibody avidity and cross reactivity by means of different ELISAs, 2) IgE functionality by means of in vivo skin test, 3) protein/peptide reactivity and cross-reactivity by means of immunoblotting, 4) proliferative responses of lymphocytes from the regional lymph nodes after stimulation with different wheat products, 5) cytokine responses of lymphocytes from regional lymph nodes after stimulation with different wheat products, and 6) histopathology of skin. With this project we anticipate to contribute with substantial knowledge to our understanding on how and why food proteins sensitise through the skin. This is important for the potential prevention of new cases of food allergy.
|Effective start/end date||01/10/2015 → 31/03/2020|