Hevea brasiliensis latex serum is commonly used as the in vivo and in vitro reference antigen for latex allergy diagnosis as it contains the full complement of latex allergens.
This study quantifies the concentrations of the significant allergens in latex serum and examines its suitability as an antigen source in latex allergy diagnosis and immunotherapy.
The serum phase was extracted from centrifuged latex that was repeatedly freeze-thawed or glycerinated. Quantitation of latex allergens was performed by two-site immunoenzymetric assays. The abundance of RNA transcripts of the latex allergens was estimated from the number of their clones in an Expressed Sequence Tags library.
The latex allergens, Hev b 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 13, were detected in freeze-thawed and glycerinated latex serum at levels ranging from 75 (Hev b 6) to 0.06 nmol/mg total proteins (Hev b 4). Hev b 6 content in the latex was up to a thousand times higher than the other seven latex allergens, depending on source and/or preparation procedure. Allergen concentration was reflected in the abundance of mRNA transcripts. When used as the antigen, latex serum may bias the outcome of latex allergy diagnostic tests towards sensitization to Hev b 6. Tests that make use of latex serum may fail to detect latex-specific IgE reactivity in subjects who are sensitized only to allergens that are present at low concentrations.
Latex allergy diagnostics and immunotherapy that use whole latex serum as the antigen source may not be optimal because of the marked imbalance of its constituent allergens.
Natural rubber (polyisoprene) from the rubber tree Hevea brasiliensis is synthesized by specialized cells called laticifers. It is not clear how rubber particles arise, although one hypothesis is that they derive from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane. Here we cloned the genes encoding four key proteins found in association with rubber particles and studied their intracellular localization by transient expression in Nicotiana benthamiana leaves. We show that, while the cis-prenyltransferase (CPT), responsible for the synthesis of long polyisoprene chains, is a soluble, cytosolic protein, other rubber particle proteins such as rubber elongation factor (REF), small rubber particle protein (SRPP) and Hevea rubber transferase 1-REF bridging protein (HRBP) are associated with the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). We also show that SRPP can recruit CPT to the ER and that interaction of CPT with HRBP leads to both proteins relocating to the plasma membrane. We discuss these results in the context of the biogenesis of rubber particles.
Current diagnostic tools for peanut allergy using crude peanut extract showed low predictive value and reduced specificity for detection of peanut allergen-specific immunoglobulin E (IgE). The Ara h 2.02, an isoform of the major peanut allergen Ara h 2, contains three IgE epitope recognition sequence of 'DPYSPS' and may be a better reagent for component resolve diagnosis. This research aimed to generate a codon-optimised Ara h 2.02 gene for heterologous expression in Escherichia coli and allergenicity study of this recombinant protein. The codon-optimised gene was generated by PCR using overlapping primers and cloned into the pET-28a (+) expression vector. Moderate expression of a 22.5 kDa 6xhistidine-tagged recombinant Ara h 2.02 protein (6xHis-rAra h 2.02) in BL21 (DE3) host cells was observed upon induction with 1 mM isopropyl β-D-1-thiogalactopyranoside (IPTG). The insoluble recombinant protein was purified under denaturing condition using nickel-nitrilotriacetic acid (Ni-NTA) affinity chromatography and refolded by dialysis in decreasing urea concentration, amounting to a yield of 74 mg/l of expression culture. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionisation time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) and immunoblot analysis confirmed the production of the recombinant 6xHis-rAra h 2.02. The refolded recombinant 6xHis-rAra h 2.02, with or without adjuvant, was able to elicit comparable level of allergen-specific IgE and IgG1 in sensitised Balb/c mice. In addition, the specific IgE antibodies raised against the recombinant protein were able to recognise the native Ara h 2 protein, demonstrating its allergenicity and potential as a reagent for diagnosis and therapeutic study.