Food allergy has become a serious human health concern. With more than 160 kinds of food allergens have been identified to date, allergen detection has become challenging. Most current allergen detection methods are capable of detecting only a few allergens at a time. The objective of this work was to develop a sensitive method for the detection of fish parvalbumin in food matrices employing a 3D aldehyde protein chip, which has the capacity to detect several allergens simultaneously. Upon testing, the protein chip was found to be highly specific in allergen detection but was found to cross-react to some extent with the allergens from some closely related fish species. The allergen recoveries ranged from 72.1% to 95.2%. The inter- and intra- assay coefficients of variation were < 18% and < 12% respectively. The LOD (limit of detection) and LOQ (limit of quantitation) of the protein chip of 0.048 and 0.087 mg parvalbumin/kg food, respectively, was sensitive enough given the threshold limit for the fish allergen. The newly developed assay seems reliable enough in detecting fish parvalbumin from various foods, food products and thus could prove useful in detecting and minimizing the instances of fish allergy.
Keywords: Allergen, Protein chip, Fish, Parvalbumin, Detection, Food allergy, 3D aldehyde protein chip, Limit of quantitation, Limit of detection, Threshold limit
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