Recombinant DNA technology provides a powerful tool to create new products in many different fields.
Agriculture and the agro-food industry are two of them.
Genetic engineering aims at improving the yield, the nutritional quality or the technological value of food crops.
The composition of foods may also be modified in order to decrease the content of toxic substances sometimes present in certain food crops.
The expression of recombinant proteins in foods must be carefully assessed as proteins may induce allergic reactions in humans.
Currently, the potential allergenicity of a protein can be reasonably assessed only when the protein is known to trigger an immune response in sensitive subjects.
By contrast, the potential allergenicity of a protein of unknown allergenicity cannot be easily predicted as no immunoserum of allergic subjects is available.
That is why an allergenicity assessment model for any genetically engineered food should be designed.
Even though the gene product is completely characterised in the transgenic product, this does not necessarily provide information on its potential allergenicity.
Animal models, in vitro tests and protein structure should be taken into account.
Besides, allergenicity is a biosafety issue, for it deals with human health.
The issue of food allergies in food safety should not be neglected, as an allergic reaction can be life threatening.
Mots-clés Pascal : Aliment, In vivo, Réponse immune, Homme, Modèle animal, Allergénicité, Allergène, Protéine recombinante, Plante transgénique, Animal transgénique, Aliment pour animal, In vitro, Aliment nouveau
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Food, In vivo, Immune response, Human, Animal model, Allergenicity, Allergen, Recombinant protein, Transgenic plant, Transgenic animal, Feed, In vitro, Novel food
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 98-0071374
Code Inist : 002A35B16. Création : 14/05/1998.