Chinese Science Bulletin

, Volume 57, Issue 15, pp 1824–1832 | Cite as

A bioinformatic evaluation of potential allergenicity of 85 candidate genes in transgenic organisms

  • ZeHong Zou
  • Ying He
  • Lin Ruan
  • BaoQing Sun
  • HuiFang Chen
  • De Chen
  • ShiMing Liu
  • XiaoGuang Yang
  • AiLin Tao
Open Access
Article Preclinical Medicine


The potential of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to increase allergenicity or predispositions to allergies has attracted much attention. An approach that will properly and holistically evaluate the allergenicity of GMOs is yet to be found. Here, 85 transgenes that have been reported in both international and domestic studies during recent years are summarized case by case; 49 of the transformed genes were from plant sources and 36 were from animal sources. EVALLER™, a web server for the in silico assessment of potential protein allergenicity, was used to evaluate the potential of the transgenic proteins as allergens. The biomedical journals listed in Highwire ( were searched and reviewed to decipher whether any of the transformed genes were linked to allergenicity or human health. The EVALLER analysis identified 5 allergenic genes, whilst our literature review found 11 genes that were either related to allergic cases or to clinical adverse events; all 16 of these genes have been used in GMOs. The analysis pathway that we have developed can help guide the selection of genes to be used in genetic modification. The pathway also provides a paradigm for allergenicity analysis of transgene candidates.


genetically modified organism allergenicity transgene software literature review 

Supplementary material

11434_2012_5149_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (430 kb)
Supplementary material, approximately 430 KB.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • ZeHong Zou
    • 1
  • Ying He
    • 1
  • Lin Ruan
    • 1
  • BaoQing Sun
    • 1
    • 2
  • HuiFang Chen
    • 1
  • De Chen
    • 1
  • ShiMing Liu
    • 1
  • XiaoGuang Yang
    • 3
  • AiLin Tao
    • 1
  1. 1.Guangzhou Municipal Key Laboratory of Allergy & Clinical Immunology, Allergy Research Branch of the State Key Laboratory of Respiratory Diseasethe Second Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical UniversityGuangzhouChina
  2. 2.Guangzhou Institute of Respiratory Diseasesthe First Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical UniversityGuangzhouChina
  3. 3.National Institute for Nutrition and Food SafetyChinese Centre for Disease Control and PreventionBeijingChina

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