Food allergy is an important issue within food safety because of the hazards for affected persons and the considerable impact on the food industry due to hygiene requirements and legal regulations. Consumer protection and law enforcement require suitable analytical techniques for the detection of allergens in foods. Immunological methods are currently preferred; however, confirmatory alternatives are needed. The determination of allergenic proteins by liquid chromatography (LC) and mass spectrometry (MS) has greatly advanced in recent years and gel-free allergenomics is developing into a routinely used application for the identification and quantitation of food allergens.
Aim of the project “LCMSMS for Food Allergens” was to establish methods for the sample preparation and analysis of foodborne allergens by LCMSMS. Through cooperation with well-established proteomics laboratories at the University of Colorado, Denver, CO, USA (IC42) and the University of Oslo, Norway (Proteomics Laboratory), including several study visits, we have developed workflows for untargeted and targeted proteomics and performed discovery and quantitative analysis for a number of allergens using nanoLC – high resolution MS or LC-triple quadrupole MS instruments.
The workflows are generally applicable for a large variety of proteins, and proteomic analyses have recently been used for Anisakis simplex proteins, fish skin mucus (projects Promofish; Gyrochloramine), cell cultures and recombinant proteins (NewMHCI).
The project was supported by a grant (NFR180701) from the Norwegian Research Council.
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