Milk Allergen Micro-Array (MAMA) for Refined Detection of Cow's-Milk-Specific IgE Sensitization

Victoria Garib, Daria Trifonova, Raphaela Freidl, Birgit Linhart, Thomas Schlederer, Nikolaos Douladiris, Alexander Pampura, Daria Dolotova, Tatiana Lepeshkova, Maia Gotua, Evgeniy Varlamov, Evgeny Beltyukov, Veronika Naumova, Styliani Taka, Alina Kiyamova, Stefani Katsamaki, Alexander Karaulov, Rudolf Valenta

Research output: Journal article (peer-reviewed)Journal article

4 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Immunoglobulin-E(IgE)-mediated hypersensitivity to cow's milk allergens is a frequent cause of severe and life-threatening anaphylactic reactions. Besides case histories and controlled food challenges, the detection of the IgE antibodies specific to cow's milk allergens is important for the diagnosis of cow-milk-specific IgE sensitization. Cow´s milk allergen molecules provide useful information for the refined detection of cow-milk-specific IgE sensitization.

METHODS: A micro-array based on ImmunoCAP ISAC technology was developed and designated milk allergen micro-array (MAMA), containing a complete panel of purified natural and recombinant cow's milk allergens (caseins, α-lactalbumin, β-lactoglobulin, bovine serum albumin-BSA and lactoferrin), recombinant BSA fragments, and α-casein-, α-lactalbumin- and β-lactoglobulin-derived synthetic peptides. Sera from 80 children with confirmed symptoms related to cow's milk intake (without anaphylaxis: n = 39; anaphylaxis with a Sampson grade of 1-3: n = 21; and anaphylaxis with a Sampson grade of 4-5: n = 20) were studied. The alterations in the specific IgE levels were analyzed in a subgroup of eleven patients, i.e., five who did not and six who did acquire natural tolerance.

RESULTS: The use of MAMA allowed a component-resolved diagnosis of IgE sensitization in each of the children suffering from cow's-milk-related anaphylaxis according to Sampson grades 1-5 requiring only 20-30 microliters of serum. IgE sensitization to caseins and casein-derived peptides was found in each of the children with Sampson grades of 4-5. Among the grade 1-3 patients, nine patients showed negative reactivity to caseins but showed IgE reactivity to alpha-lactalbumin (n = 7) or beta-lactoglobulin (n = 2). For certain children, an IgE sensitization to cryptic peptide epitopes without detectable allergen-specific IgE was found. Twenty-four children with cow-milk-specific anaphylaxis showed additional IgE sensitizations to BSA, but they were all sensitized to either caseins, alpha-lactalbumin, or beta-lactoglobulin. A total of 17 of the 39 children without anaphylaxis lacked specific IgE reactivity to any of the tested components. The children developing tolerance showed a reduction in allergen and/or peptide-specific IgE levels, whereas those remaining sensitive did not.

CONCLUSIONS: The use of MAMA allows for the detection, using only a few microliters of serum, of IgE sensitization to multiple cow's milk allergens and allergen-derived peptides in cow-milk-allergic children with cow-milk-related anaphylaxis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2401
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 21 May 2023


  • Animals
  • Female
  • Cattle
  • Milk
  • Allergens
  • Caseins
  • Lactalbumin
  • Anaphylaxis/diagnosis
  • Milk Hypersensitivity
  • Immunoglobulin E
  • Peptides
  • Lactoglobulins
  • Milk Proteins


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