Allergies in Coastal Regions
Edible snails, mussels (e.g. oysters), calamari and squids are molluscs. Together with crustaceans they are also known as seafood. Allergies occur in rare cases, as with fish and crustaceans, but are more common in coastal regions where they are part of the diet. Responsible is the muscle protein Tropomyosin so that cross reactions to crustaceans and house dust mites may occur. Since 2007 ready packed foods containing molluscs have to be labelled according to Annex IIIa of directive 2007/68.
A specific determination of all species belonging to this group is a real challenge for analytics. A specific and complete ELISA method for all molluscs is currently not available. Using real time PCR an identification of molluscs is possible via their DNA.
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