The Phenomenon of 'Fish-Chicken Syndrome'

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Fish and chicken meat are cross-reactive
Fish and chicken meat are cross-reactive

(HealthDay News) — Fish and chicken meat are cross-reactive, involving three allergens, according to a study published online June 27 in Allergy.

Annette Kuehn, Ph.D., from the Luxembourg Institute of Health in Esch-sur-Alzette, and colleagues examined the relevance of cross-reactivity between fish and chicken meat in patients with allergy to chicken meat without sensitization to chicken eggs. They recruited 29 patients with food allergy to fish and chicken meat and seven with food allergy to chicken only.

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The researchers identified chicken parvalbumin and two new allergens, aldolase and enolase. These were recognized by specific immunoglobulin E in 61, 75, and 83 percent of all patient sera, respectively; most were also positive for the fish homologues. There was high cross-reactivity for fish and chicken meat allergens; there was a correlation for high inhibition rates with fish or chicken allergens and the patient's primary sensitization to fish or chicken. Enolase and aldolase were detectable in chicken breast in cooked or roasted foods; parvalbumin was seen in chicken legs and wings.

"Fish and chicken meat are cross-reactive foods, both fish-allergic and chicken meat-allergic patients might be at risk of developing a food allergy to chicken meat or to fish, respectively," the authors write.

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