Noble, K.A., C. Liu, S.K. Sathe, K.H. Roux. 2017. A cherry seed-derived spice, Mahleb, is recognized by anti-almond antibodies including almond-allergic patient IgE. J. Food Sci. doi: 10.111/1750.3841.13757.
There are a number of examples of immunologic cross-reactivity elicited by pollens, fruits, seeds, and nuts of closely related plant species. Such cross-reactivity is of particular concern for patients with food allergies. In this report, we investigated a spice (mahleb) that is prepared from the kernel of the St. Lucie cherry, Prunus mahaleb, for cross-reactivity with almond (Prunus dulcis), using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and Western blot. Almond and mahleb are members of the same genus. Cross-reactivity between the mahleb and almond was demonstrated by reaction of cherry and almond kernel protein extracts with antibodies raised against almond proteins. Almond-speciﬁc murine monoclonal IgG, rabbit polyclonal IgG, and almond-allergic serum IgE each exhibited cross-reactivity with cherry kernel protein. Because of the demonstrated cross-reactivity between almond and mahleb, these ﬁndings should be of special concern to almond-allergic patients and attending medical personnel.