Meat allergy: Ii - effects of food processing and enzymatic digestion on the allergenicity of bovine and ovine meats

Alessandro Fiocchi, Patrizia Restani, Enrica Riva, Anna Rosa Restelli, Giacomo Biasucci, Corrado L. Galli, Marcello Giovannini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives This study was designed to evaluate whether peptic treatment of BSA and OSA affects their allergenicity and to evaluate the effect of technological treatments of meat for infant feeding on the allergenicity of these proteins. Subjects: Twelve children (8 males and 14 females) suffering from atopic dermatitis (AD), aged 12 months to 4.33 years (mean age 2.21 1.05 years). Study Design and Methods Children suffering from atopic dermatitis (AD), clinically reactive and SPT-positive to beef, underwent skin prick testing (SPT) and radioallergosorbent test (RAST) with BSA and OSA, before and after peptic treatment. They were tested also with commercially available homogenized bovine meat (HBM) and with freeze-dried bovine (FDBM) and ovine (FDOM) meats. Peptic digestion of BSA and OSA was carried out in a Dubnoffs water bath containing 0.05 mg/ml of pepsin. SPT and RAST were performed for 1 mg/ml of BSA and OSA digested 5 minutes, 2 hours and 4 hours with pepsin; homogenized bovine meat, and FDBM and FDOM. SPT results were expressed as diameters (in mm) of the wheal obtained after SPT; a diameter 3 mm was considered as positive. RAST was considered positive for IgE values 5 Ul/ml. Results: SPT to native BSA and OSA were positive in all patients. Only 2 of the 12 children were SPT-positive to HBM, FDBM, and FDOM. After digestion, SPTs and were positive as follows for BSA, 4/12 after 5 minutes peptic treatment, 2/12 after 2 hours and 2/12 after 4 hours; for OSA, 3/12 after 5 minutes peptic treatment, none after 2 and 4 hours. None of RASTs was positive after peptic attack. Conclusions: Both proteolytic digestion and technological treatment reduced the allergenic potential of meat products.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245-250
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the American College of Nutrition
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 1995


  • Bovine meat
  • Enzymatic digestion
  • Food allergy
  • Ovine meat
  • Serum albumins
  • Technologically treated products

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Food Science


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