A new type of flour which binds with allergen proteins using polyphenols has been designed and will soon be tested in allergen-desensitization trials.
The flour, developed at North Carolina State University by Mary Ann Lila and colleagues, was revealed in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. It was designed from the beginning to bind with allergens.
Cranberries may be the solution to peanut allergy
Their initial creation was peanut flour combined with polyphenols from cranberries to bind with peanut proteins. In laboratory tests with mice, this results in the peanut flour triggering desensitization reactions without harmful allergic responses.
“Polyphenol fortification of peanut flour resulted in a hypoallergenic matrix with reduced IgE binding and degranulation capacity, likely due to changes in protein secondary structure or masking of epitopes, suggesting potential applications for oral immunotherapy,” writes Lila.
The team tested several fruit-based polythenol mixtures and found cranberry to be the most beneficial for peanut proteins. They plan to test with other proteins and submit for funding to attempt human trials as well.