Natural Variability of Allergen Levels in Soybeans Across North and South Americas from Five Growing Seasons
Monday, March 7, 2016
South Exhibit Hall H (Convention Center)
Tao Geng, Ph. D
Rationale: Soybean is one of eight foods that, as a group, are responsible for more than 90% of all food-induced allergies. Although exposure to allergenic proteins from these foods is key for developing sensitization of atopic populations and eliciting allergic reactions in sensitized consumers, the natural variability of the levels of specific allergenic proteins is unknown.

Methods: Using validated enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs), seven soybean allergens were quantified from 624 conventional soybean seed samples with 41 different varieties, which were grown on 26 different field locations over five different years. Variance Component Analysis (VCA) was used to determine the impact factors on allergen levels.

Results: Seven soybean allergen levels ranged from six (Gly m 6) to 19 fold (Gly m 4) over five growing seasons. VCA demonstrated that the environmental conditions had the largest impact on allergen levels.

Conclusions: Atopic individuals are exposed to variable levels of soybean allergenic proteins.