OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the purified latex allergens and to demonstrate specific IgE antibody in the sera of health care workers and spina bifida patients with clinical latex allergy.
METHODS: Two radioallergosorbent and an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) using latex proteins Hev b 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7 along with two glove extracts and Malaysian nonammoniated latex (MNA) were evaluated to demonstrate IgE in the sera of health care workers and spina bifida with latex allergy and controls with no history of latex allergy.
RESULTS: ELISA using the purified latex allergens demonstrated specific IgE in 32-65% health care workers and 54-100% of spina bifida patients with latex allergy. The corresponding figures for RAST were 13-48 and 23-85 for RAST-1 and 19-61 and 36-57 for RAST-2. These results were comparable with the results obtained with glove extracts and crude rubber latex proteins.
CONCLUSIONS: When used simultaneously, latex proteins Hev b 2 and Hev b 7 reacted significantly with specific serum IgE in 80% of health care workers and 92% of spina bifida patients with latex allergy by ELISA technique, while this combination gave lower positivity when the RASTs were used. By the addition of Hev b 3, specific IgE was detected in all spina bifida patients with latex allergy. Both RASTs failed to show specific IgE in the control subjects, while the ELISA showed significant latex-specific IgE in 22% of controls.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to clone and express Hev b 3 and to obtain the immunologic active and soluble recombinant allergen for diagnosis of SB-associated latex allergy.
METHODS: A complementary DNA (cDNA) coding for Hev b 3 was amplified from RNA of fresh latex collected from Malaysian rubber trees (Hevea brasiliensis). PCR primers were designed according to sequences of internal peptide fragments of natural (n) Hev b 3. The 5'-end sequence was obtained by specific amplification of cDNA ends. The recombinant (r) Hev b 3 was produced in Escherichia coli as a 6xHis tagged protein. Immunoblotting and inhibition assays were performed to characterize the recombinant allergen.
RESULTS: An Hev b 3 cDNA clone of 922 bp encoding a protein of 204 amino acid residues corresponding to a molecular weight of 22.3 kd was obtained. In immunoblots 29/35, latex-allergic patients with SB revealed IgE binding to rHev b 3, as did 4 of 15 of the latex-sensitized group. The presence of all IgE epitopes on rHev b 3 was shown by its ability to abolish all IgE binding to nHev b 3. Hev b 3 is related to Hev b 1 by a sequence identity of 47%. Cross-reactivity between these 2 latex allergens was illustrated by the large extent of inhibition of IgE binding to nHev b 1 by rHev b 3.
CONCLUSION: rHev b 3 constitutes a suitable in vitro reagent for the diagnosis of latex allergy in patients with SB. The determination of the full sequence of Hev b 3 and the production of the recombinant allergen will allow the epitope mapping and improve diagnostic reagents for latex allergy.