Mammalian Meat Allergy Accompanied by Venom Allergy: A Review of 12 Cases

Cross-reactivities Between Venom and Red Meat allergy?

  • Ali Kutlu Mail Ordu Medical Park hospital Division of Immunology and Allergic Diseases, Ordu, Turkey
  • Derya Unal Division of Immunology and Allergic Diseases, Yedikule Chest Surgeon and Chest Diseases Education Research Hospital, Istanbul, Turkey
Allergy, Mammalian meat, Venom


There has recently been an increase in mammalian meat allergy (MMA) in the Black Sea Region of Turkey. It has been associated with the expansion of tick populations.Tick bites appear to result in sensitization to the carbohydrate allergen galactose-alpha–1, 3-galactose, which is present in many types of mammalian meats. In this study, we have emphasized that  Ixodes ricinus named tick type which is implicated in meat allergy, is found in domestic animals of Black Sea Region of Turkey. A new concept has been recently raized; suggesting that having an alpha-gal allergy is associated with an increased risk of sensitization to multiple venom spesific immunoglobulin (Ig) E. Our aim is to evaluate the clinical characteristics of adult patients with MMA and its relationship with insect sting reactions in Turkey. Patients referring to the allergy outpatient clinic with possible MMA were interviewed regarding reactions to a stinging insect. Demographic features and detailed histories of the patients were recorded. Skin prick test (SPT) with commercial beef extract and venom allergens, as well as prick to prick tests with raw beef and cooked beef were performed. Serum total IgE and beef meat specific IgE were measured. Of 50 interviewed patients, 12 patients (4 male [33,3%] and 8 female [66,6%]) had a history of venom hypersensitivity reaction. The mean age was 36.50±13.35 years (range:18–61). History of other allergic diseases was present in 8 (66.6%) patients. Both venom and meat allergy were confirmed with SPT or prick to prick tests in these 12 patients. Among these patients sensitization to honey bee venom was more frequent (83%). MMA and venom allergy are influenced by the same environmental exposures. We believe that there may be shared immunologic factors and similar antigens; making venom allergic patients more susceptible to MMA.


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How to Cite
Kutlu A, Unal D. Mammalian Meat Allergy Accompanied by Venom Allergy: A Review of 12 Cases. Iran J Allergy Asthma Immunol. 18(5):584-588.
Letter to the Editor