Combining 2-DE immunoblots and mass spectrometry to identify putative soybean (Glycine max) allergens

Mei Lu, Yuan Jin, Ron Cerny, Barbara Ballmer-Weber, Richard E. Goodman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Soybean is recognized as a commonly allergenic food, but the identity of important allergens is not well studied. Recently, some global regulatory agencies started requiring quantitative analysis of individual allergens, including unproven allergens, as part of the risk assessment for genetically engineered (GE) soybeans. We sought to identify soybean proteins that bind IgE from any of 10 individual soybean-sensitized subjects. Soybean IgE binding proteins were identified by 2-DE immunoblots using sera from four soy-allergic and plasma from six soy-sensitized human subjects. Corresponding spots were excised from stained gels, digested, and analyzed using a quadrupole TOF Synapt G2-S tandem mass spectrometer. Results showed the major IgE binding proteins were subunits of either β-conglycinin (Gly m 5) or glycinin (Gly m 6). Soybean Kunitz trypsin inhibitor (SKTI) was a significant IgE binding protein for four subjects. Soybean agglutinin, seed biotinylated protein (SBP) of 65 kDa, late embryogenesis protein (LEP), and sucrose-binding protein were identified as IgE binding only for soy-sensitized subjects. We conclude that the major soybean allergens are isoforms of Gly m 5, Gly m 6, and possibly SKTI and that requirements for quantitative measurement of proteins that are not clear allergens is not relevant to safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-215
Number of pages9
JournalFood and Chemical Toxicology
StatePublished - Jun 2018


  • Glycinin
  • IgE
  • LC-MS/MS
  • Soybean allergens
  • Two-dimensional immunoblots
  • β-conglycinin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Toxicology


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