Olive tree (Olea europaea) pollen is a main cause of allergy associated with extensive areas of Europe and North America. Ole e 10, a small (10.8 kDa) and acidic (pI 5.8) protein, has been identified as a major allergen from the olive pollen, isolated, and characterized. Circular dichroism analysis gave 17% alpha helix, 33% beta sheet, and 21% beta turn for its secondary structure. Based on amino acid sequences of tryptic peptides, the protein was cloned and sequenced. The allergen consists of a single polypeptide chain of 102 aa, with a signal peptide of 21 residues. Ole e 10 showed homology with the C-terminal domain of another olive allergen, Ole e 9 (1,3-beta-glucanase, 53% identity), with deduced sequences from Arabidopsis thaliana genes (42-46% identity) and with polypeptide segments (Cys boxes) of proteins involved in yeast development (Epd1/Gas-1p/Phr2 families; 42-43% similarity). Ole e 10 showed 55% prevalence for olive-allergic patients and exhibited an IgE response dependent on its conformation. Remarkable IgE cross-reactivity was detected with Ole e 9, but no correlation was observed between the individual IgE responses to both allergens. Ole e 10 shares IgE B cell epitopes with proteins from Oleaceae, Gramineae, Betulaceae, Chenopodiaceae, Cupressaceae, Ambrosia, and Parietaria pollens, latex, and vegetable foods, such as tomato, kiwi, potato, and peach. These data indicate that Ole e 10 is a new pan-allergenic plant protein that shows notable intra- and interspecie IgE cross-reactivity and is a powerful candidate to be involved in pollen-latex-fruit syndrome.
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