Food Allergens pp 263-295 | Cite as

Recent Advances in the Detection of Allergens in Foods

  • Silvia de la Cruz
  • Inés López-Calleja
  • Rosario Martín
  • Isabel González
  • Marcos Alcocer
  • Teresa GarcíaEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1592)


Food allergy is a public health issue that has significantly increased worldwide in the past decade affecting consumers’ quality of life and making increasing demands on health service resources. Despite recent advances in many areas of diagnosis and treatment, our general knowledge of the basic mechanisms of the disease remained limited, i.e., not at pace with the exponential number of new cases and the explosion of the new technologies. For sensitized individuals, the only effective way to prevent allergic reactions is the strict avoidance of the offending food. For this reason, a number of regulatory bodies in several countries have recognized the importance of providing information about the presence of food allergens by enacting laws, regulations, or standards for food labeling of “priority allergens.” This has resulted in the need for the development of analytical methods for protection of food-allergic consumers that should be among others highly specific, sensitive, and not influenced by the presence of the food matrix components. Several analytical approaches target either the allergen itself or a corresponding allergen marker such as peptide fragment or gene segment and have been used in the detection and quantification of allergens in food products. In this short review, some of the conventional and new methods for the detection of allergens in food are listed and briefly discussed.

Key words

Food allergy Allergens Sensitization Analytical methods ELISA Mass spectrometry 



López-Calleja and de la Cruz Ares were supported by Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad of Spain (Grant No. AGL 2013-48018-R). Silvia de la Cruz is also recipient of a fellowship from the Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte of Spain (AP2010-0028).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Silvia de la Cruz
    • 1
  • Inés López-Calleja
    • 1
  • Rosario Martín
    • 1
  • Isabel González
    • 1
  • Marcos Alcocer
    • 2
  • Teresa García
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Facultad de Veterinaria, Departamento de Nutrición, Bromatología y Tecnología de los AlimentosUniversidad Complutense de MadridMadridSpain
  2. 2.School of BiosciencesUniversity of NottinghamNottinghamUK

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