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  1. Yeang HY, Arif SA, Yusof F, Sunderasan E
    Methods, 2002 May;27(1):32-45.
    PMID: 12079415 DOI: 10.1016/S1046-2023(02)00049-X
    As the living cytoplasm of laticiferous cells, Hevea brasiliensis latex is a rich blend of organic substances that include a mélange of proteins. A small number of these proteins have given rise to the problem of latex allergy. The salient characteristics of H. brasiliensis latex allergens that are recognized by the International Union of Immunological Societies (IUIS) are reviewed. These are the proteins associated with the rubber particles, the cytosolic C-serum proteins and the B-serum proteins that originate mainly from the lutoids. Procedures for the isolation and purification of latex allergens are discussed, from latex collection in the field to various preparative approaches adopted in the laboratory. As interest in recombinant latex allergens increases, there is a need to validate recombinant proteins to ascertain equivalence with their native counterparts when used in immunological studies, diagnostics, and immunotherapy.
    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
  2. Yip E, Cacioli P
    J. Allergy Clin. Immunol., 2002 Aug;110(2 Suppl):S3-14.
    PMID: 12170237 DOI: 10.1067/mai.2002.124499
    Gloves that will provide a barrier of protection from infectious organisms are an essential feature of medical practice for the protection of both patients and medical personnel. Natural rubber latex has consistently been the most satisfactory raw material for the manufacture of gloves. Certain latex proteins, carried over into the finished product by inadequate manufacturing processes, may pose a risk of provoking allergic reactions in some patients and medical workers. As with any allergy, the risk depends on the route of exposure and dose. Hence, the method of manufacture, including the means used to coat gloves to make donning easy, can influence the eventual exposure of sensitive people to latex allergens. In this article, we describe the several processes in use and their effects on latex protein content.
    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology
  3. Yeang HY, Ward MA, Zamri AS, Dennis MS, Light DR
    Allergy, 1998 May;53(5):513-9.
    PMID: 9636811
    Separate studies have reported spina bifida patients to be especially allergic to proteins of 27 and 23 kDa found in the serum of centrifuged natural rubber latex. An insoluble latex protein located on the surface of small rubber particles, Hev b 3, has similarly been found to be allergenic to spina bifida patients. In this study, internal amino acid sequences of Hev b 3 showed similarity to the published sequences for the 27- and 23-kDa latex proteins. The latter allergens are hence identified as Hev b 3. Determination of the molecular weight of Hev b 3 revealed various species of 22-23 kDa. The consistent gaps of about 266 Da observed between various forms of the intact protein suggest that the protein undergoes post-translational modification. To determine whether Hev b 3 also occurs in a soluble form in the latex serum, its presence in molecular-filtered serum was checked by ELISA and Western blot. The results showed Hev b 3 to be largely absent in the C-serum from fresh latex. The protein is therefore insoluble in its native state. However, a small amount of the solubilized protein was detected in ammonia-stabilized latex (commonly used in the manufacture of latex products).
    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
  4. Shahnaz M, Azizah MR, Hasma H, Mok KL, Yip E, Ganesapillai T, et al.
    Med. J. Malaysia, 1999 Mar;54(1):26-31.
    PMID: 10972001
    Health care workers have been reported to constitute one of the few high-risk groups related to IgE-mediated hypersensitivity associated with the use of latex products. This paper describes the first ever study of prevalence carried out in Malaysia among these workers. One hundred and thirty health care personnel from Hospital Kuala Lumpur were skin tested. Extracts used were prepared from seven different brands of natural rubber latex gloves with varying levels of extractable protein (EPRRIM). Out of the 130 volunteers, 4 (3.1%) had positive skin test to latex with extracts with high levels of EPRRIM (> 0.7 mg/g). The prevalence among the Malaysian health care workers can be considered to be low in comparison to that of some consumer countries as the USA which reported a prevalence of as high as 16.9%.
    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
  5. Yeang HY, Chow KS, Yusof F, Arif SA, Chew NP, Loke YH
    J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol, 2000 Jul-Aug;10(4):215-22.
    PMID: 11039838
    Six Hevea brasiliensis latex protein allergens, Hevb 1, Hev b 2, Hev b 3, Hev b 4, and two variants of Hev b 7 (7b and 7c), were purified from Hevea latex, while a seventh protein, Hev b 5, was prepared in recombinant form. The presence of these proteins in glove extracts was indicated by their respective antibodies in the serum of rabbits immunized against the extracts. The relative propensities of IgE binding to the individual latex allergens were compared using sera from latex-allergic patients. IgE recognition of Hev b 4, Hev b 7b, Hev b 5 and Hev b 2 was most frequently encountered, with 75, 61, 31 and 28%, respectively, of the patient sera reacting. Sensitivity to multiple latex proteins was common, and out of the 31 seropositive patients, 23 (74%/ ) had IgE against at least two latex allergens, while 12 (39%) had IgE specific for at least three allergens. Statistical analysis of the data suggested that many patients might have acquired sensitivity to Hev b 2, Hev b 4 and Hev b 7b from a common source. (e.g., from latex products). On the other hand, sensitivity to Hev b 5 and to Hev b 7c were interrelated. It is plausible that sensitivity to these two proteins might have been acquired from sources other than latex products (e.g., from certain foods).
    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology
  6. Yeang HY, Cheong KF, Sunderasan E, Hamzah S, Chew NP, Hamid S, et al.
    J. Allergy Clin. Immunol., 1996 Sep;98(3):628-39.
    PMID: 8828541 DOI: 10.1016/s0091-6749(96)70097-0
    Two major water-insoluble proteins are located on the surface of rubber particles in Hevea brasiliensis latex. A 14.6 kd protein (Hev b 1), found mainly on large rubber particles (> 350 mm in diameter), and a 24 kd protein (Hev b 3), found mainly on small rubber particles (average diameter, 70 nm), are recognized by IgE from patients with spina bifida and latex allergy. Although Hev b 1 (also called the rubber elongation factor [REF]) has previously been reported as a major latex allergen, this conclusion has been disputed on the basis of results from other studies. The allergenicity of Hev b 1 is verified in this study by testing the recombinant protein generated from its gene. Because allergenicity is confined to patients with spina bifida and not observed in adults sensitive to latex, it is not a major latex allergen. The identification of Hev b 3 as another allergen originating from rubber particles is confirmed by immunogold labeling and electron microscopy. Observations with the monoclonal antibody USM/RC2 developed against Hev b 3 show that the protein has a tendency to fragment into several polypeptides of lower molecular weight (from 24 kd to about 5 kd) when stored at -20 degrees C. There is also indication of protein aggregation from the appearance of proteins with molecular weights greater than 24 kd. Fragmentation of Hev b 3 is induced immediately on he addition of latex B-serum, which is normally compartmentalized in the lutoids in fresh latex. In the preparation of ammoniated latex (used for the manufacture of latex products), the lutoids are ruptured, and the released B-serum reacts with Hev b 3 on the rubber particles to give rise to an array of low molecular weight polypeptides that are allergenic to patients with spina bifida.
    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
  7. Hamilton RG, Adkinson NF
    J. Allergy Clin. Immunol., 1998 Sep;102(3):482-90.
    PMID: 9768592
    BACKGROUND: No characterized diagnostic natural rubber latex skin testing material is licensed for use in the United States.

    OBJECTIVE: We have conducted a multicenter clinical skin testing study to document the safety and diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of a candidate Hevea brasiliensis nonammoniated latex (NAL) extract. These data are intended to support the licensing of this reagent for the diagnosis of latex allergy in high-risk populations.

    METHODS: Three hundred twenty-four subjects (304 adults and 20 children) were classified by their clinical history as having latex allergy (LA group, 124 adults and 10 children) or having no latex allergy (NLA group, 180 adults and 10 children). All subjects provided blood samples and then received sequential puncture skin tests (PSTs) at 1, 100, or 1000 microg/mL protein with a bifurcated needle and NAL (Greer Laboratories) from Malaysian Hevea brasiliensis (clone 600) sap. A 2-stage glove provocation test was used to clarify latex allergy status of individuals with positive history/negative PST result and negative history/positive PST result mismatches.

    RESULTS: Twenty-four subjects (15%) originally designated as having LA on the basis of their initial clinical history were reclassified to the NLA group on the basis of a negative glove provocation test result. Of the 134 subjects with LA, 54 (40%) were highly sensitive to latex, with a positive PST result at 1 microg/mL NAL. The Greer NAL reagent produced a positive PST rate (sensitivity) of 95% and 99% in subjects with LA at 100 microg/mL and 1 mg/mL, respectively. The negative PST rate (specificity) in 190 subjects with a negative history with the NAL extract at 100 microg/mL and 1 mg/mL, was 100% and 96%, respectively. Immediately after the PST, mild systemic reactions (mainly pruritus) were recorded in 16.1 % of the adults in the LA group and 4.4% of the adults in the NLA group. No reactions required treatment with epinephrine. Only mild delayed reactions were observed in 9.6% (LA group) and 2.8% (NLA group) of subjects 24 to 48 hours after PST. Mean wheal and erythema diameters measured in the 10 children in the LA group with spina bifida at 100 microg/mL and 1 mg/mL were similar to those observed in the adults in the LA group, suggesting that children are not at increased risk for systemic reactions compared with adults.

    CONCLUSIONS: A suggestive clinical history is necessary but not sufficient for a definitive diagnosis of IgE-dependent latex allergy. These data support the safety and diagnostic efficacy of the Greer NAL, skin test reagent at 100 micro/mL and 1 mg/mL for confirmatory PSTs.

    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
  8. Sunderasan E, Bahari A, Arif SA, Zainal Z, Hamilton RG, Yeang HY
    Clin. Exp. Allergy, 2005 Nov;35(11):1490-5.
    PMID: 16297147 DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2222.2005.02371.x
    BACKGROUND:
    Hev b 4 is an allergenic natural rubber latex (NRL) protein complex that is reactive in skin prick tests and in vitro immunoassays. On SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), Hev b 4 is discerned predominantly at 53-55 kDa together with a 57 kDa minor component previously identified as a cyanogenic glucosidase. Of the 13 NRL allergens recognized by the International Union of Immunological Societies, the 53-55 kDa Hev b 4 major protein is the only candidate that lacks complete cDNA and protein sequence information.

    OBJECTIVE:
    We sought to clone the transcript encoding the Hev b 4 major protein, and characterize the native protein and its recombinant form in relation to IgE binding.

    METHODS:
    The 5'/3' rapid amplification of cDNA ends method was employed to obtain the complete cDNA of the Hev b 4 major protein. A recombinant form of the protein was over-expressed in Escherichia coli. The native Hev b 4 major protein was deglycosylated by trifluoromethane sulphonic acid. Western immunoblots of the native, deglycosylated and recombinant proteins were performed using both polyclonal antibodies and sera from latex-allergic patients.

    RESULTS:
    The cDNA encoding the Hev b 4 major protein was cloned. Its open reading frame matched lecithinases in the conserved domain database and contained 10 predicted glycosylation sites. Detection of glycans on the Hev b 4 lecithinase homologue confirmed it to be a glycoprotein. The deglycosylated lecithinase homologue was discerned at 40 kDa on SDS-PAGE, this being comparable to the 38.53 kDa mass predicted by its cDNA. Deglycosylation of the lecithinase homologue resulted in the loss of IgE recognition, although reactivity to polyclonal rabbit anti-Hev b 4 was retained. IgE from latex-allergic patients also failed to recognize the non-glycosylated E. coli recombinant lecithinase homologue.

    CONCLUSION:
    The IgE epitopes of the Hev b 4 lecithinase homologue reside mainly in its carbohydrate moiety, which also account for the discrepancy between the observed molecular weight of the protein and the value calculated from its cDNA.
    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology
  9. Turjanmaa K, Palosuo T, Alenius H, Leynadier F, Autegarden JE, André C, et al.
    Allergy, 1997 Jan;52(1):41-50.
    PMID: 9062628
    For the diagnosis of IgE-mediated (immediate) hypersensitivity to natural rubber latex (NRL), skin prick testing with extracts of latex gloves has been widely used, but such extracts are difficult to standardize. The present study aimed to produce on an industrial scale an NRL extract from freshly collected NRL and to evaluate, calibrate, and standardize the extract by both in vivo and in vitro testing. The source material, latex of the rubber tree, Hevea brasiliensis (clone RRIM 600), was frozen immediately after collection in Malaysia and shipped in dry ice to Stallergènes SA, France. Protein and allergen profiles were analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), immunoblotting, isoelectric focusing (IEF), crossed immunoelectrophoresis (CIE), and crossed radioimmunoelectrophoresis (CRIE). Allergen quantification was effected by RAST inhibition. The capacity of the preparation to elicit immediate hypersensitivity reactions in vivo was measured by skin prick testing in 46 latex-allergic patients and 76 nonallergic control subjects. SDS-PAGE and immunoblot profiles of the extract and an NRL standard (E8) provided by the US Food and Drug Administration were almost identical, disclosing several distinct IgE-binding proteins with apparent molecular weights of 14, 20, 27, 30, and 45 kDa, conforming to reported molecular weights of several significant NRL allergens. An arbitrary index of reactivity (IR) of 100 was assigned to the extract at 1:200 dilution (w/v), having a protein content of 22 micrograms/ml. Skin prick testing of latex-allergic patients and controls using the extract at 100 IR revealed 93% sensitivity, 100% specificity, 100% negative predictive value, and 96% positive predictive value. In conclusion, a skin prick test reagent for diagnosis of type I NRL allergy was successfully standardized. The reagent was demonstrated to contain most, if not all, of the currently known clinically significant NRL allergens, and it showed high sensitivity and specificity.
    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
  10. Hamilton RG, Adkinson NF
    J. Allergy Clin. Immunol., 1996 Nov;98(5 Pt 1):872-83.
    PMID: 8939150
    BACKGROUND: Nonammoniated latex, ammoniated latex, and rubber glove extracts are the only sources of natural rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) latex that have potential for use as skin testing reagents in the diagnosis of latex allergy. Their diagnostic sensitivity and specificity as skin test reagents are unknown.

    OBJECTIVE: We conducted a phase 1/2 clinical study to examine the safety and diagnostic accuracy (sensitivity and specificity) of nonammoniated latex, ammoniated latex, and rubber glove extracts as skin test extracts to identify the most efficacious source material for future skin test reagent development.

    METHODS: Twenty-four adults not allergic to latex, 19 adults with hand dermatitis or pruritus, and 59 adults with a latex allergy were identified by clinical history. All provided blood and then received puncture skin tests and intradermal skin tests with nonammoniated latex, ammoniated latex, and rubber glove extracts from Malaysian H. brasiliensis latex by use of sequential titration. A glove provocation test and IgE anti-latex RAST were used to clarify positive history-negative skin test response and negative history-positive skin test response mismatches.

    RESULTS: All three extracts were biologically safe and sterile. After normalization to 1 mg/ml of total protein, all three extracts produced equivalent diagnostic sensitivity and specificity in puncture skin tests and intradermal skin tests at various extract concentrations. Optimal diagnostic accuracy was safely achieved at 100 micrograms/ml for intradermal skin tests (e.g., nonammoniated latex: puncture skin test sensitivity 96%, specificity 100%; intradermal skin test sensitivity 93%, specificity 96%). The presence of IgE antibody in skin was highly correlated with IgE anti-latex in serum (nonammoniated latex: r = 0.98, p < 0.001; ammoniated latex: r = 0.94, p < 0.001; rubber glove extract: r = 0.96, p < 0.001). All five available subjects with a positive history, negative skin test response, and absence of IgE antibody in serum had a negative glove provocation test response, indicating no clinical evidence of latex allergy. No systemic or large local allergic reactions were observed with puncture skin tests or intradermal skin tests.

    CONCLUSIONS: Equivalent diagnostic sensitivity and specificity were observed with the nonammoniated latex, ammoniated latex, and rubber glove extract skin test reagents after normalization for total protein; nonammoniated latex may be considered the reagent of choice on the basis of practical quality control and reproducibility considerations.

    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
  11. Kurup VP, Yeang HY, Sussman GL, Bansal NK, Beezhold DH, Kelly KJ, et al.
    Clin. Exp. Allergy, 2000 Mar;30(3):359-69.
    PMID: 10691894
    BACKGROUND: Latex allergy is largely an occupational allergy due to sensitization to natural rubber latex allergens present in a number of health care and household products. Although several purified allergens are currently available for study, information on the usefulness of these purified, native or recombinant allergens in the demonstration of specific immunoglobulin (Ig) E in the sera of patients is lacking.

    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.

    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
  12. Wagner B, Krebitz M, Buck D, Niggemann B, Yeang HY, Han KH, et al.
    J. Allergy Clin. Immunol., 1999 Nov;104(5):1084-92.
    PMID: 10550757
    BACKGROUND: Two natural rubber latex proteins, Hev b 1 and Hev b 3, have been described in spina bifida (SB)-associated latex allergy.

    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.

    Matched MeSH terms: Latex/immunology*
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