Substance Info: (and synonyms)

Background Info:

See also: Cow - dander, and Bovine Serum Albumin / BSA

Domesticated cows probably originated from ancient India. Introduced into America in the 16th century and Australia about 200 years later. Allergy to beef is not common. Can be tolerated by cow'- milk-allergic individuals.

Contains valuable nutrients including iron and zinc. High intakes are linked to cancer of the colon and too much beef fat can contribute to heart disease.

See also Cow/Cow Dander.

Beef contains BSA and bovine gamma globulin (BGG). These are heat labile proteins found also in cow's milk. This may explain the different clinical responses to raw and cooked beef in milk-allergic patients. (Werfel ) 24 allergens found of which many are heat-labile and denatured during cooking (Werfel). Among the muscle proteins, tropomysosin was found to be a weak meat allergen.(Ayuso 2000 ref.3621 6) Other beef proteins that appear to be allergenic are actin and occasionally myoglobin.(Restani) Of the beef allergens, only BSA, actin, and IgG appear to be major allergens.(Ayuso 2000 ref.3621 6)

Major cow dander and cow hair allergen are also found in beef (Prahl 1981 ref.399 43)

Both proteolytic digestion and technological treatment can reduce the allergenic potential of meat products. (Fiocchi ) Heating reduces sensitization to beef and bovine serum albumin but does not abolish reactivity under home conditions. However, industrially heat-treated and freeze-dried beef may be suitable substitutes in beef-allergic children's diets (Fiocchi).


Adverse Reactions:


[ 1 / 39 ]

Delayed urticaria to beef ingestion. (Coker 2013 ref.29202 0)

Coker HB, Jakes ME, Mountcastle EA. Delayed urticaria to beef ingestion. J Am Acad Dermatol 2013 Mar;68(3):e101

[ 2 / 39 ]

A patient experiencing anaphylaxis and urticaria, in some cases preceded by ingestion of red meat. (Phillip 2013 ref.28536 7)

Phillip Lieberman, Scott P. Commins Ask the Expert: A Patient Experiencing Anaphylaxis and Urticaria, in Some Cases Preceded by Ingestion of Red Meat J Allergy Clin Immunol: In Practise 2013;1(1):107-108

[ 3 / 39 ]

Red meat allergy in Sweden: Association with tick sensitization and B-negative blood groups. (Hamsten 2013 ref.29313 8)

Hamsten C, Tran TA, Starkhammar M, Brauner A, Commins SP, Platts-Mills TA, van Hage M. Red meat allergy in Sweden: Association with tick sensitization and B-negative blood groups. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2013 Oct 3;

[ 4 / 39 ]

Patients have been observed to be clinically allergic to red meat and meat-derived gelatin. This study describes a prospective evaluation of the clinical significance of gelatin sensitization, the predictive value of a positive test result, and an examination of the relationship between allergic reactions to red meat and sensitization to gelatin and galactose-a-1,3-galactose (a-Gal). Adult patients evaluated in the 1997-2011 period for suspected allergy/anaphylaxis to medication, insect venom, or food were skin tested with gelatin colloid. In vitro (ImmunoCAP) testing was undertaken where possible. Positive gelatin test results were observed in 40 of 1335 subjects: 30 of 40 patients with red meat allergy (12 also clinically allergic to gelatin), 2 of 2 patients with gelatin colloid–induced anaphylaxis, 4 of 172 patients with idiopathic anaphylaxis (all responded to intravenous gelatin challenge of 0.02-0.4 g), and 4 of 368 patients with drug allergy. Test results were negative in all patients with venom allergy (n = 241), nonmeat food allergy (n = 222), and miscellaneous disorders (n = 290). ImmunoCAP results were positive to a-Gal in 20 of 24 patients with meat allergy and in 20 of 22 patients with positive gelatin skin test results. The results of gelatin skin testing and anti–a-Gal IgE measurements were strongly correlated (r = 0.46, P < .01). a-Gal was detected in bovine gelatin colloids at concentrations of approximately 0.44 to 0.52 µg/g gelatin by means of inhibition RIA.
Most patients allergic to red meat were sensitized to gelatin, and a subset was clinically allergic to both. The detection of a-Gal in gelatin and correlation between the results of a-Gal and gelatin testing raise the possibility that a-Gal IgE might be the target of reactivity to gelatin. The pathogenic relationship between tick bites and sensitization to red meat, a-Gal, and gelatin (with or without clinical reactivity) remains uncertain. (Mullins 2012 ref.27555 5)

Mullins RJ, James H, Platts-Mills TA, Commins S. Relationship between red meat allergy and sensitization to gelatin and galactose-a-1,3-galactose. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2012 Apr 3. [Epub ahead of print]

[ 5 / 39 ]

Currently available tests, such as skin testing or in vitro determination of beef-specific immunoglobulin E (IgE), do not provide an accurate diagnosis of beef allergy. The recent development of the basophil activation test (BAT) presents a new opportunity for the diagnosis of food allergies. This study reports a 37-year-old woman with a history of recurrent generalised urticaria, nausea, vomiting and hypotension after ingestion of beef, suggesting a beef allergy. Although the skin prick test and serum specific IgE to beef, pork and milk allergens showed negative results using commercial kits, the BAT showed significant upregulation of CD203c in a dose-dependent manner compared to both non-atopic and atopic controls. To the authors knowledge, this is the first case study of beef allergy consisting of a non-IgE-mediated reaction. (Kim 2010 ref.27618 7)

Kim JH, An S, Kim JE, Choi GS, Ye YM, Park HS. Beef-induced anaphylaxis confirmed by the basophil activation test. Allergy Asthma Immunol Res 2010 Jul;2(3):206-208

[ 6 / 39 ]

Allergy to meat of mammalian origin has been reviewed in various published reports and studies. This article describes several of these meat allergies and their peculiarities. The authors include consideration of cross-reactions that have been demonstrated or simply suspected for each of these allergies. (Drouet 2009 ref.23828 2)

Drouet M. Allergènes des viandes / Meat allergens Revue Française d'Allergologie 2009;49(3):160-165

[ 7 / 39 ]

A report of 2 cases of anaphylaxis to mammalian meats, which were evaluated by using an in-house alpha-gal IgE immunoassay and novel intra-dermal tests to cetuximab. Both were diagnosed with idiopathic anaphylaxis after undergoing inconclusive allergy tests. Patient 1 was a 53-year-old man who had an anaphylactic shock ninety minutes after consuming pork offal. He experienced recurrent episodes of delayed urticaria 4 hours after ingesting pork, beef, and horse, lamb, and rabbit meat. Consumption of milk and poultry did not result in allergic reactions. Patient 2 was a 48-year-old woman who experienced an anaphylactic shock in 2004 two hours after eating a meal that included pork offal (kidney) and 7 episodes of urticaria that occurred at night. She consumed milk and poultry without incident. Total IgE levels measured were 38 kU/L for patient 1 and 454 kU/L for patient 2. Both patients had slightly positive prick-in-prick test results, these being only to raw beef and pork kidney. Specific IgE antibodies were present for beef, pork, and rabbit meat in both patients. Specific IgE for alpha-gal were 4.82 kU/L in patient 1 and 0.28 kU/L in patient 2. Both patients exhibited specific IgE antibodies to cat epithelia in the absence of IgE to Fel d 1, and patient 2 showed only a slight sensitization to cat albumin. Both patients had negative results for IgE antibodies to pork albumin. In contrast, the control subject with pork-cat syndrome had specific IgE antibodies that were greater than 100 kU/L against cat al- bumin and 9.41 kU/L against pork albumin but had no anti– a-gal IgE antibodies. (Jacquenet 2009 ref.23979 7)

Jacquenet S, Moneret-Vautrin DA, Bihain BE. Mammalian meat-induced anaphylaxis: clinical relevance of anti-galactose-alpha-1,3-galactose IgE confirmed by means of skin tests to cetuximab. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2009 Sep;124(3):603-605

[ 8 / 39 ]

This Swiss study investigated the clinical characteristics of meat allergy, to validate the routine diagnostic tools and to compare our results with data from the literature. Thirteen patients with a positive case history of a meat allergy to either chicken (n = 6), beef (n = 5) or pork (n = 2), respectively, were recruited within the framework of the EU-project REDALL. Meat allergy associated symptoms as reported by the patients ranged from contact urticaria of the oral mucosa (oral allergy syndrome, OAS) to anaphylactic reactions. Skin testing with the responsible meat was positive in nine patients, and in vitro determination of specific IgE in four patients. Under DBPCFC one patient responded with nausea and dysphagia after 10.2 g of chicken and two patients either with urticaria or nausea, diarrhoea, emesis and abdominal pain at 0.102 g and 34 g of beef, respectively. Meat allergy seems to be an uncommon food allergy in Central Europe. (Theler 2009 ref.27579 2)

Theler B, Brockow K, Ballmer-Weber BK. Clinical presentation and diagnosis of meat allergy in Switzerland and Southern Germany. Swiss Med Wkly 2009 May 2;139(17-18):264-70.

[ 9 / 39 ]

Cases of adverse reaction to raw meat coupled with tolerance to well cooked beef have been described, as judged by SPT, IgE binding or oral challenge, and similar results were found with raw and cooked chicken meat. (Restani 2009 ref.23438 7)

Restani P, Ballabio C, Tripodi S, Fiocchi A. Meat allergy. Curr Opin Allergy Clin Immunol 2009 Jun;9(3):265-9.

[ 10 / 39 ]

Homogenization and freeze-drying, industrial processes usually applied to meat during the production of baby-foods, can significantly decrease the allergenic potential of beef (Fiocchi 1995 ref.1293 5): raw beef, domestically cooked beef (1008C for 5 min) and unheated BSA elicited a positive SPT response in a group of 12 children with clinically documented beef allergy, whereas homogenized and freeze-dried beef preparations did not. In oral challenges, all the children reacted to home-cooked beef and some of them to heated BSA, but there was no clinical reaction to either homogenized or freeze-dried beef. Thus, home cooking may be insufficient to affect the complex matrix of meat and the associated blood albumins and immunoglobulins, whereas it was shown that the industrial processes decrease the content of these proteins (Cahen 1998 ref.2588 5). (In: Restani 2009 ref.23438 2)

Restani P, Ballabio C, Tripodi S, Fiocchi A. Meat allergy. Curr Opin Allergy Clin Immunol 2009 Jun;9(3):265-9.

[ 11 / 39 ]

Systemic allergic reactions during skin testing to food allergens are described in two individuals. A 28-year-old male reported allergic reactions, mild to moderate in severity, each time he tasted fish (a professional task) (mackerel, bogue, salmon, anchovy, bassfish, brown picarel, comber, streaked gurnard and pandora). During SPT and prick-to-prick to raw and cooked fishes, he presented urticaria and tachycardia. A 59-year-old male had a long history of urticaria-angioedema and asthma attacks, developing 2 hours following the consumption of mammalian meat (pork, beef, lamb, goat and rabbit). Skin-test to various meats (raw and cooked: beef, pork, lamb, rabbit) resulted in generalized urticaria, allergic rhinitis and conjunctivitis during the last 5 mins of the test. Milk was negative. (Pitsios 2009 ref.24241 7)

Pitsios C, Dimitriou A, Kontou-Fili K. Allergic reactions during allergy skin testing with food allergens. Eur Ann Allergy Clin Immunol 2009 Aug;41(4):126-128

[ 12 / 39 ]

This study sought to determine whether IgE antibodies to alpha-gal are present in sera from patients who report anaphylaxis or urticaria after eating beef, pork, or lamb. Twenty-four patients with IgE antibodies to alpha-gal were identified. These patients described a similar history of anaphylaxis, angiodema or urticaria 3 to 6 hours after the ingestion of meat and reported fewer or no episodes when following an avoidance diet. SPTs to mammalian meat produced wheals of usually less than 4 mm, whereas intradermal or fresh-food SPTs provided larger and more consistent wheal responses. CAP-RAST testing revealed specific IgE antibodies to beef, pork, lamb, cow's milk, cat, and dog but not turkey, chicken, or fish. Absorption experiments indicated that this pattern of sensitivity was explained by an IgE antibody specific for alpha-gal. (Commins 2008 ref.22708 5)

Commins SP, Satinover SM, Hosen J, Mozena J, Borish L, Lewis BD, Woodfolk JA, Platts-Mills TA. Delayed anaphylaxis, angioedema, or urticaria after consumption of red meat in patients with IgE antibodies specific for galactose-alpha-1,3-galactose. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2008 Dec 11;

[ 13 / 39 ]

These authors have identified a series of patients with IgE antibodies against galactose-alpha-1,3-galactose who reported having had episodes of anaphylaxis or severe angioedema 1 to 3 hours after eating beef or pork (unpublished data). The explanation for such a delayed reaction is not clear, but a similar delay has been reported in patients with IgE antibodies against carbohydrate epitopes of plant proteins.It has recently been reported that some patients with cat allergy have IgE antibodies that bind to a carbohydrate epitope on cat IgA. (Chung 2008 ref.21640 5)

Chung CH, Mirakhur B, Chan E, Le QT, Berlin J, Morse M, Murphy BA, Satinover SM, Hosen J, Mauro D, Slebos RJ, Zhou Q, Gold D, Hatley T, et al. Cetuximab-induced anaphylaxis and IgE specific for galactose-alpha-1,3-galactose. N Engl J Med 2008 Mar 13;358(11):1109-17.

[ 14 / 39 ]

Beef allergy in adults and children. (Fiocchi 2005 ref.10187 4)

Fiocchi A, Restani P, Bouygue GR, Martelli A. Beef allergy in adults and children. Allergy 2005;60(1):126.

[ 15 / 39 ]

Serum IgG4 antibodies to common foods like wheat, beef, pork, and lamb are elevated in IBS patients. In keeping with the observation in other atopic conditions, this finding suggests the possibility of a similar pathophysiological role for IgG4 antibodies in IBS. (Zar 2005 ref.14061 7)

Zar S, Benson MJ, Kumar D Food-specific serum IgG4 and IgE titers to common food antigens in irritable bowel syndrome. Am J Gastroenterol 2005;100(7):1550-1557

[ 16 / 39 ]

Meat allergy is rarely reported. Most of the described cases are sensitizations to bovine serum albumin. A 35-year-old nonatopic female with allergic episodes after ingestion of several types of meat was studied. The patient showed specific IgE antibodies to a 17-kDa, a heat-resistant protein without disulfide bonds, and with a myoglobin identity. The study of specific IgE to this allergen among atopic patients showed that it was recognized by about 1% of the subjects. (Fuentes 2004 ref.9087 2)

Fuentes MM, Palacios R, Garcés MM, Caballero ML, Moneo I. Isolation and characterization of a heat-resistant beef allergen: myoglobin. Allergy 2004;59(3):327-31

[ 17 / 39 ]

A 10-month old infant who presented with vomiting and diarrhea beginning 2 h after eating beef, chicken or pork meat. Skin prick tests and challenge tests with the fresh meats were negative, whereas patch tests (read at 24 and 72 h, blast transformation assay and in vitro histamine liberation assay were positive. An oral provocation test with 13 g of chicken meat induced a positive reaction. The infant had no symptoms after eating hen's egg, cow's milk or fish. Subsequently, symptoms did not recur after the three meats were eliminated from the infant's diet. Non-IgE mechanisms were thought to be involved. (Petrus 2004 ref.14749 7)

Petrus M, Rival L, Abbal M. Report of an unusual case of intolerance to beef, chicken and pork in a 10-month old infant. Rev Fr Allergol Immunol Clin 2004 44:4 (407-410)

[ 18 / 39 ]

Ten children and two adult relatives with beef allergy were evaluated. Clinical manifestations following beef ingestion included pruritus, urticaria, angioedema, nausea, vomiting, rhinorrhoea, sneezing, hoarseness, wheezing, and dyspnoea. None reported allergic reactions to chicken, turkey, fish, cow's milk, and any other foods. All had history of several emergency admittances following beef ingestion (steam-cooked, or grilled, or roasted). Symptoms were limited to the skin in four patients. The other eight patients' reactions were uniphasic anaphylaxis with no obvious biphasic or protracted reactions. Onset of symptoms occurred with 15 mins to 1hr. The rate of family history of beef allergy was 67% (8/12). Three patients (two with commercial extract, and one with cooked beef) had positive skin test responses to beef. Ten (83%) patients had elevated serum IgE concentrations and the beef-specific IgE was positive in all patients (0.83 - 36.6 kUA/l))
Labial food challenge was positive in four (30%) patients (erythema under the lip in 3, and swelling of the lower lip in 1). Of the five patients who underwent open food challenges, three were positive and two tolerated the beef administered. A possible explanation as to why the SPT results with commercial beef extract were negative in most of our patients may relate in part to the stability of the allergen. (Orhan 2003 ref.7552 1)

Orhan F, Sekerel BE. Beef allergy: a review of 12 cases. Allergy 2003;58(2):127-31

[ 19 / 39 ]

Two patients are described:
A 3-year-old boy developed erythema and peribuccal pruritus after eating veal. He tolerated milk, chicken, turkey, pork and lamb. A 45-year-old woman presented with severe corticosteroid-dependant bronchial asthma. Over the previous 2 years she presented with labial angioedema, abdominal pain, and erythematous papule lesions in her upper limbs, dyspnea, and occasional vomiting after eating cured ham, cured loin of pork, and veal, lamb, rabbit, or pork, mainly if they are undercooked. She tolerated mortadella, cooked ham, milk, chicken, and turkey. Serum specific IgE for rabbit was <0.35 in patient 1 and 2.03 in patient 2. For veal 23.1 and 1.35 respectively, and similarly, for beef 0.5 and <0.35, lamb 0.7 and 1.35, pork <0.35 and 5.2 respectively. Dog dander and cat dander not done in patient 1 and >100 in patient 2.

In Patient 1, a large number of IgE-binding protein bands between 25 and 95 kDa were observed to veal and bovine meat extracts. This did not occur for the lamb extracts, in which only one protein band of approximately 65 kDa was recognized. On the other hand, serum from the woman only recognized a protein band of about 65 kDa all extracts. The serum of Patient 2, all types of mammalian meats were eliminated from her diet and the beginning was accompanied by a significant improvement in bronchial symptoms, and the digestive symptoms disappeared. Beef was eliminated from the diet of the boy, and the he remained without symptoms.
BSA is responsible for much of the cross-reactivity between different types of mammalian meat and dander. Both patients' sera contained IgE that showed binding to a protein band of approximately 65 kDa, most likely albumin. (Palacios 2002 ref.6844 3)

Palacios Benito R, Alvarez-Lovel MC, Martinez-Cocera C, Del Castillo Paya MM, Romanillos RA. Allergy to meat. Allergy 2002;57(9):858-9

[ 20 / 39 ]

Practically all respiratory animal allergens characterized at the molecular level belong to the lipocalin family of proteins. The current list comprises the major allergens of horse, cow, dog, mouse, rat and cockroach as well as beta-lactoglobulin of cow's milk. (Mantyjarvi 2000 ref.4113 7)

Mantyjarvi R, Rautiainen J, Virtanen T. Lipocalins as allergens. Biochim Biophys Acta 2000;1482(1-2):308-17

[ 21 / 39 ]

Beef allergy has an incidence between 3. 28% and 6.52% among children with atopic dermatitis, its incidence may be as much as 0.3% in the general population. (Fiocchi 2000 ref.3630 0)

Fiocchi A, Restani P, Riva E Beef allergy in children. Nutrition 2000;16(6):454-7

[ 22 / 39 ]

The effect of heat on the allergenicity of beef and bovine serum albumin was investigated among 10 toddlers skin prick test (SPT)-positive to raw and cooked beef. The meat-allergy diagnosis was confirmed during double-blind, placebo-controlled food challenge (DBPCFC) with 180 g of beef cooked for 5 min at 100 degrees C. All children were SPT-positive to unheated bovine serum albumin. Seven were positive to heated bovine serum albumin, one to freeze-dried beef, and none to homogenized beef. DBPCFCs were negative for homogenized beef and freeze-dried beef, positive for unheated bovine serum albumin in five patients, and positive for heated albumin in four children. This study concludes that heating reduces sensitization to beef and bovine serum albumin but does not abolish reactivity to albumin under home conditions. However, industrially heat-treated and sterilized homogenized beef and freeze-dried beef may be suitable substitutes in beef-allergic children's diets. (Fiocchi 1998 ref.2601 1)

Fiocchi A, Restani P, Riva E, et al. Heat treatment modifies the allergenicity of beef and bovine serum albumin. Allergy 1998;53:798-802

[ 23 / 39 ]

The purposes of this study were to examine the prevalence of symptomatic sensitivity to beef in a selected pediatric population and to determine the frequency of concomitant reactivity to cow's milk and beef. Eleven of 335 children referred for evaluation of atopic dermatitis and possible food hypersensitivity were found to have symptomatic sensitivity to beef; eight were also sensitive to milk, as demonstrated in previous DBPCFCs. Eight patients reacted to beef during DBPCFC, and three tolerated beef in a DBPCFC and well-cooked beef in an open challenge but reacted to ingestion of less well-cooked beef. Symptoms experienced during challenge with beef included ocular and nasal symptoms (rhinorrhoea), pruritic erythematous rash, vomiting, urticaria, oral pruritus, nasal pruritus, dyspnea, edema, generalized urticaria, periorbital and perioral edema, vomiting, asthma, pruritic erythematous rash on face and neck and pruritic lips.

Specific IgE antibodies to heat-labile beef proteins might explain why some patients can tolerate well-cooked beef but not medium-rare and rare beef. Patients reacting only to rare beef may not need to maintain a complete beef elimination diet. (Werfel 1997 ref.609 79)

Werfel S, Cooke SK, Sampson HA. Clinical reactivity to beef in children allergic to cow's milk. J Allergy Clin Immunol 1997;99(3):293-300

[ 24 / 39 ]

A report from New Zealand demonstrating allergic reactions to oral, surgical and topical bovine collagen. (Mullins 1996 ref.820 56) Also probably crossreactive to bovine gelatine.

Mullins RJ, Richards C, Walker T. Allergic reactions to oral, surgical and topical bovine collagen. Anaphylactic risk for surgeons. Aus NZ J Ophth 1996;24(3):257-60

[ 25 / 39 ]

Hollander hypothesises that the Persian Gulf Syndrome (PGS) is caused by beef allergy. (Hollander 1995 ref.1591 0)

Hollander DH. Beef allergy and the Persian Gulf syndrome. Med Hypotheses 1995;45(3):221-2

[ 26 / 39 ]

12 children with beef allergy, 2 experienced an immediate reaction to BSA (beef) and 3 to OSA (lamb/mutton) with a DBPCFC. One other child developed severe dyspnoea, cough and asthma 3 hours after OSA challenge. Tolerance to these meats may be present in spite of positive RAST and SPT tests. Crossreactivity was demonstrated. (Fiocchi 1995 ref.718 36)

Fiocchi A, Restani P, Riva E, Qualizza R, Bruni P, Restelli AR, Galli CL. Meat allergy: I--Specific IgE to BSA and OSA in atopic, beef sensitive children [see comments]. J Am Coll Nutrition 1995;14(3):239-44

[ 27 / 39 ]

The aims of this research were: to evaluate cross-reactivity between lamb and beef; to evaluate the role of BSA and OSA as allergens in beef allergic children; and to evaluate cross-reactivity between BSA and OSA. 16 children with atopic dermatitis (AD) (aged 12 months-8.8 years) were recruited and all were found to be SPT-positive to bovine meat; to ovine meat and to milk. After a period of restricted diet, the 16 children were recalled; 12 AD-free children were evaluated by SPT and RAST for the following allergens: bovine meat, ovine meat, BSA, OSA. Double-blind, placebo-controlled food challenge (DBPCFC) with bovine serum albumin (BSA) and ovine serum albumin (OSA) were performed. The total dose administered to the children corresponded to the amount of albumin present in 180 g of calf or lamb meat (90 and 63 mg respectively).

All children tested SPT positive to bovine and ovine meat, and to BSA and OSA. In RAST, 6 of 12 children were positive to bovine meat, 3 to lamb meat, 4 to BSA and 3 to OSA. DBPCFC showed an immediate reaction to BSA or OSA in 2 and 3 children, respectively. One other child developed severe dyspnea, cough and asthma 3 hours after OSA challenge. The study concludes that BSA and OSA are important beef and lamb allergens; they share not only proteic sequences, but also allergenic properties. Clinical tolerance to BSA and OSA can be present in beef and lamb SPT-positive children.

BSA and OSA are important beef and lamb allergens; they share not only proteic sequences, but also allergenic properties. However, patients may show tolerance to these proteins in spite of a positive RAST or SPT. (Fiocchi 1995 ref.718 83)

Fiocchi A, Restani P, Riva E, Qualizza R, Bruni P, Restelli AR, Galli CL. Meat allergy: I--Specific IgE to BSA and OSA in atopic, beef sensitive children [see comments]. J Am Coll Nutrition 1995;14(3):239-44

[ 28 / 39 ]

16 children suffering from atopic dermatitis (AD), aged 12 months-8 8 years were found SPT-positive to bovine meat; all of them were also SPT-positive to ovine meat and to milk. After a period of restricted diet, they were evaluated by SPT and RAST for: bovine meat, ovine meat, BSA 1 mg/ml, OSA 1 mg/ml. The total dose administered to the children corresponded to the amount of albumin present in 180 g of calf or lamb meat (90 and 63 mg respectively. All children tested SPT positive to bovine and ovine meat, and to BSA and OSA. In RAST, 6 of 12 children were positive to bovine meat, 3 to lamb meat, 4 to BSA and 3 to OSA. DBPCFC showed an immediate reaction to BSA or OSA in 2 and 3 children, respectively. One other child developed severe dyspnea, cough and asthma 3 hours after OSA challenge. Therefore BSA and OSA are important beef and lamb allergens; they share not only proteic sequences, but also allergenic properties. Clinical tolerance to BSA and OSA can be present in beef and lamb SPT-positive children.

Fiocchi A, Restani P, Riva E, Qualizza R, Bruni P, Restelli AR, Galli CL. Meat allergy: I--Specific IgE to BSA and OSA in atopic, beef sensitive children. J Am Coll Nutr 1995 Jun;14(3):239-44.

[ 29 / 39 ]

A patient with urticaria after eating raw cattle meat, but due to Toxocara spp. in the meat and not the meat itself. (Espana 1993 ref.2806 8)

Espana A, Serna MJ, Rubio M, Redondo P, Quintanilla E Secondary urticaria due to toxocariasis: possibly caused by ingesting raw cattle meat? J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 1993;3(1):51-2

[ 30 / 39 ]

Two cases of hypersensitivity to biological adhesives made of human plasma and bovine heterologous proteins are reported in this study. (Jankowski 1992 ref.3194 7)

Jankowski R, Beaudouin E, Kanny G, Wayoff M, Moneret-Vautrin DA Hypersensitivity accidents to thrombin following the use of biological glues [French]. Ann Otolaryngol Chir Cervicofac 1992;109(2):95-9

[ 31 / 39 ]

Two of 132 children with atopic dermatitis were positive to beef, whereas 15 were positive to cow's milk. (Sampson 1992 ref.505 14)

Sampson HA. The immunopathogenic role of food hypesensitivity in atopic dermatitis. Acta Derm Vernereol 1992;176(Suppl):34-37

[ 32 / 39 ]

Allergic reactions to insulin containing beef allergen. (Yoshino 1990 ref.1598 7)

Yoshino G, Yamochi W, Moriyama H, Ueno H, Inui A, Oimomi M, Baba S Pancreatic diabetes with severe generalized allergy to purified beef, pork, and human insulins [letter] Diabetes Care 1990;13(10):1093-4

[ 33 / 39 ]

Acute recurrent pancreatitis lasting for 8-10 years, attributed to allergy to beef, milk, potato, fish and eggs. (Matteo 1990 ref.1597 3)

Matteo A, Sarles H. Is food allergy a cause of acute pancreatitis? Pancreas 1990;5(2):234-7

[ 34 / 39 ]

Immune complex glomerulopathy in a 16.5 year old male. Markedly elevated levels of circulating immune complexes (greater than 6400 mg/dl) were found containing kappa casein and bovine serum albumin (BSA), the latter predominating. Markedly elevated serum BSA hemagglutinating titers were also present (1:40,960). Cross reacting precipitating antibodies to BSA, beef, and pork were demonstrated, but not to flounder or ovalbumin. (McCrory 1986 ref.1198 3)

McCrory WW, Becker CG, Cunningham Rundles C, et al. Immune complex glomerulopathy in a child with food hypersensitivity. Kidney Int 1986;30(4):592-8

[ 35 / 39 ]

Allergy to cows' milk protein, soya and beef are major causes of infantile colitis. (Jenkins 1984 ref.1604 7)

Jenkins HR, Pincott JR, Soothill JF, Milla PJ, Harries JT. Food allergy: the major cause of infantile colitis. Arch Dis Child 1984;59(4):326-9

[ 36 / 39 ]

Anaphylaxis presumed to be caused by beef containing streptomycin (Tinkelman 1984 ref.3195 5) or Penicillin. (Schwarz 1984 ref.3700 9)(Kanny 1994 ref.1592 5)

Tinkelman DG, Bock SA Anaphylaxis presumed to be caused by beef containing streptomycin. Ann Allergy 1984;53(3):243-4

[ 37 / 39 ]

Contact urticaria from handling meats and fowl. (Fisher 1982 ref.5700 3)

Fisher AA. Contact urticaria from handling meats and fowl. Cutis 1982;30(6):726, 729

[ 38 / 39 ]

Chronic diarrhoea. (Read 1980 ref.1599 8)

Read NW, Krejs GJ, Read MG, Santa Ana CA, Morawski SG, Fordtran JS. Chronic diarrhea of unknown origin. Gastroenterology 1980;78(2):264-71

[ 39 / 39 ]

Beef-sensitive patients are invariably allergic to milk. (Speer 1976 ref.1025 5)

Speer F. Food allergy: the 10 common offenders. Am Fam Physician 1976;13(2):106-12

Non-Immune reactions

[ 1 ]

A Polish study suggests that migraine attacks are produced most frequently by cow's milk (in 10 out of 17 patients); cabbage, flour and eggs in 5 patients; preservatives, cottage and Swiss cheese, porcine meat in 4 patients; colorants and chocolate in 3 patients; beef, strawberries, lemons and butter in 2 patients. (Mylek 1992 ref.1607 7)

Mylek D. Migraine as one of the symptoms of food allergy. [Polish] (published erratum) Pol Tyg Lek 1992;47(3-4):89-91

[ 2 ]

In 60 migraine patients, the commonest foods causing reactions were wheat (78%), orange (65%), eggs (45%), tea and coffee (40% each), chocolate and milk (37%) each), beef (35%), and corn, cane sugar, and yeast (33% each). (Grant 1979 ref.1242 1)

Grant ECG. Food allergies and migraine. Lancet 1979;1:966-968

Occupational reactions

[ 1 ]

Two cases of Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA) allergy. A female laboratory technician with asthma due to cat allergy, developed an exacerbation of bronchial symptoms as a consequence of BSA powder inhalation at work. The second case concerns a woman with a similar cat sensitivity, who presented an oral allergy syndrome-type clinical reaction, gastric pain and diarrhoea immediately after eating cooked pork meat. Subsequently, she developed the same reaction after eating goat meat and goat cheese, and then also after eating beef. Both patients were sensitized to BSA and to other mammalian serum albumins. The two cases show that BSA, a well known cause of food allergy in childhood, may also provoke symptoms of food allergy in adulthood, though in case of powder inhalation, it may provoke respiratory symptoms. Prior animal sensitization appears to represent a risk factor. (Voltolini 2013 ref.29232 7)

Voltolini S, Spigno F, Cioe Et AA. Bovine Serum Albumin: a double allergy risk. Eur Ann Allergy Clin Immunol 2013 Aug;45(4):144-147

[ 2 ]

Severe acute asthma associated with raw meat cutting. (Sheehan 2009 ref.23568 6)

Tonnel AB, Tillie-Leblond I, Botelho AD, de BF, Pauli G. Severe acute asthma associated with raw meat cutting. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 2009 Apr;102(4):348

[ 3 ]

Meat protein allergic contact dermatitis. A 27-year-old man with a history of 11-year-long hand eczema working as a cook and usually using rubber gloves for protection, and when not, complained of an itching sensation after handling certain foods in particular to meat products. He also complained of oral pruritis after ingesting meat products. Prick tests with pork and meat were positive. Serum specific IgE to pork and beef was positive. (Dalmau 2005 ref.12583 7)

Dalmau J, Serra E, Campos M, Peramiquel L, Vila AT, Alomar A. Meat protein allergic contact dermatitis: A case report. Contact Dermatitis 2005 May;52(5):5-286

[ 4 ]

Occupational allergy to raw beef due to cross-reactivity with dog epithelium. The association between allergy to epithelia and mammalian meat has been previously reported. Most authors describe serum albumin as the responsible cross-reacting allergen. This study presents a 28-year-old asthmatic male cook sensitised to dog epithelium who developed wheezing and contact urticaria when handling raw beef. Symptoms appeared mostly during defrosting procedures. Skin test was positive to raw and cooked beef and raw lamb, and cat and dog. Dog serum specific IgE was positive. Bronchial challenge with beef extract was positive. Secondary cross-reactivity was attributed to BSA. (San-Juan 2005 ref.11723 7)

San-Juan S, Lezaun A, Caballero ML, Moneo I. Occupational allergy to raw beef due to cross-reactivity with dog epithelium. Allergy 2005;60(6):839-40.

[ 5 ]

Occupational protein contact dermatitis. (Boehncke 1998 ref.2637 4)

Boehncke WH, Pillekamp H, Gass S, Gall H. Occupational protein contact dermatitis caused by meat and fish. Int J Dermatol 1998;37(5):358-60

[ 6 ]

Occupational protein contact dermatitis. (Iliev 1998 ref.2097 6)

Iliev D, Wüthrich B. Occupational protein contact dermatitis with type I allergy to different kinds of meat and vegetables. Int Arch Occup Environ Health 1998;71(4):289-292

[ 7 ]

Occupational contact urticaria associated with hand eczema (Jovanovic 1992 ref.2660 2)

Jovanovic M, Oliwiecki S, Beck MH. Occupational contact urticaria from beef associated with hand eczema. Contact Dermatitis 1992;27(3):188-9

[ 8 ]

Occupational contact urticaria. (Garansson 1981 ref.6109 7)

Goransson K. Occupational contact urticaria to fresh cow and pig blood in slaughtermen. Contact Dermatitis 1981;7(5):281-2

[ 9 ]

Hand dermatitis due to occupational contact with calf's liver (Fisher 1977 ref.3701 4)

Fisher AA, Stengel F. Allergic occupational hand dermatitis due to calf's liver. Curr Contact News 1977;19:561-564

[ 10 ]

The preparation of food in restaurant kitchens carries a high risk of occupational dermatoses. Analysis of 33 cases revealed four different etiological types. Simple irritant dermatitis was rare (2 cases), plain contact dermatitis was more common (6 cases). The major type IV allergens incriminated were metals, onion and garlic. The major proteinaceous allergens indicated by history and test results were fish and shellfish. Scratch tests were postive to, inter alia, cod, plaice, herring, eel, cheese, cat dander, mackerel, lobster, pork. Patch tests were positive to garlic, carrot, plaice, cress, and curry, among other. Specific IgE to a mixed extract of cod, herring, perch and pike, were positive in 4 patients. (Hjorth 1976 ref.400 37)

Hjorth N, Roed-Petersen J. Occupational protein contact dermatitis in food handlers. Contact Dermatitis 1976;2:28-42

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