Scientific articles

Reality and seriousness of corn allergy

Nicolie, B., Bernier, B., Drouet, M. Allergie au maïs (Allergy to corn). 2009. Revue Française d’Allergologie. 49 (7): 547-553. (In French, but with an English abstract).

Pétrus, M., Trigatti, A., Bouchet, H., Colin, P., and Dutau, G. 2009. Allergie à la farine de maïs: deux nouvelles observations pédiatriques (Allergy to corn flour: two new pediatric observations). Revue Française d’Allergologie. 49 (7): 545-546. (In French, but with an English abstract).

Dutau, G. 2009. L’allergie alimentaire au maïs: une allergie émergente? (Food allergy to corn: an emerging allergy?) Revue Française d’Allergologie. 49 (7): 513-514. (In French, but with an English abstract).

Pétrus, M., Jésu, J., Cossarizza, G., Torregrosa, A., Gardes, H., Ingarao, J.-P., and Dutau, G. 2009. Allergie à la farine de maïs: à propos d’une nouvelle observation chez un enfant de huit ans (Allergy to corn flour, with reference to a new observation in an eight-year-old child).Revue Française d’Allergologie. 49 (4): 379-382. (In French, but with an English abstract).

  • The authors suggest that using corn starch instead of corn flour in cooking might be a good way to avoid triggering a corn allergy! I wrote to the lead author to say that there are some of us allergic to corn starch as well. He insists that most people allergic to corn are allergic to corn proteins and that corn starch shouldn’t have any proteins in it. (Starch is a polysaccharide, and in its pure form, would not contain protein). I personally would not rely on manufacturers getting 100% of the protein out of corn starch during processing.

Scibilia J, Pastorello EA, Zisa G, Ottolenghi A, Ballmer-Weber B, Pravenotti V, Scovena E, Robino A, and Ortolani C. 2008. Maize food allergy: a double-blind placebo-controlled studyClinical and Experimental Allergy. 38(12):1943-1949.

  • Corn allergy is rare but may result in anaphylactic shock. Exposure to as little as 100 milligrams of corn can cause reactions in sensitive people.

Borghesan F., and Borghesan N. 2005. Maize flour-induced rhinitisAllergie et Immunologie (Paris). 37(7):283-284.

  • The patient in question had only nasal allergy symptoms caused by corn for 15 years before he developed typical food allergy reactions.

Cristaudo, A., Simonato, B., Pasini, G., De Rocco, M., Curioni, A., and Giannattasio, M. 2004. Contact urticaria and protein contact dermatitis from corn in a patient with serum IgE specific for a salt-soluble corn protein of low molecular weightContact Dermatitis. 51 (2): 84–87.

Pastorello, E.A., Pompei, C., Pravettoni, V., Farioli, L., Calamari, A.M., Scibilia, J., Robino, A.M., Conti, A., Iametti, S., Fortunato, D., Bonomi, S., and Ortolani, C. 2003. Lipid-transfer protein is the major maize allergen maintaining IgE-binding activity after cooking at 100°C, as demonstrated in anaphylactic patients and patients with positive double-blind, placebo-controlled food challenge resultsJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 112 (4):775-783.

Tanaka, L.G., El-Dahr, J.M., and Lehrer, S.B. 2001. Double-blind, placebo-controlled corn challenge resulting in anaphylaxisJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 107(4): 744.

Tanaka, L.G., Olmos, C.E., McCants, M.L., Wild, L.G., El-Dahr, J.M. and Lehrer, S.B. 2001. Corn allergy: the first double-blind placebo-controlled food challenge (DBPCFC). Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 107(2): 630.

  • This is an abstract of a poster presentation.

Pastorello, E.A., Farioli, L., Pravettoni, V., Ispano, M., Scibola, E., Trambaioli, C., Giuffrida, M.G., Ansaloni, R., Godovac-Zimmermann, J., Conti, A., Fortunato, D., and Ortolani, C. 2000. The maize major allergen, which is responsible for food-induced allergic reactions, is a lipid transfer proteinJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 106(4): 744-751.

Figueredo, E., Quirce, S., del Amo, A., Cuesta, J., Arrieta, I., Lahoz, C., and Sastre, J. 1999. Beer-induced anaphylaxis: identification of allergensAllergy. 54(6): 630-634.

Moneret-Vautrin, D.A., Kanny, G., and Beaudouin, E. 1998. L’allergie alimentaire au maïs existe-t-elle? (Does food allergy to corn exist?) Allergie et immunologie. 30 (7): 230.

  • Corn allergy is rare, but real. People allergic to corn also tend to have allergies to other foods and pollens.

Pauls, J.D. 1998. Food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis to cornJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 101 (6): 853-854.

  • A 15-year-old girl went from having anaphylactic reactions to corn only if she exercised after eating it to reacting to any corn in her diet.

David, T.J. 1984. Anaphylactic shock during elimination diets for severe atopic eczemaArchives of Disease in Childhood. 59: 983-986.

  • An 8.5-month-old baby went into anaphylactic shock when eating corn for the first time.