"BACKGROUND: Human seminal plasma (HSP) allergy is uncommon, with symptoms ranging from vulvovaginal pruritus to life-threatening anaphylaxis. Although several seminal plasma allergens have been reported and their molecular masses have been estimated to range between 12 and 75 kd, the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) has recently been identified as a causative allergen. Given that in a large number of cases symptoms appeared during or after the first intercourse, a cross-reactivity phenomenon might be implicated. OBJECTIVE: We sought to assess the presence of IgE cross-reactivity among proteins from dog epithelium and HSP and to attempt to identify the allergens involved. METHODS: Forty-one patients with dog epithelium allergy were selected. One of them experienced anaphylaxis in contact with her husband's seminal plasma. Skin prick tests, serum specific IgE measurements, SDS-PAGE immunoblotting, and inhibition tests were performed to study the pattern of IgE-binding proteins and the potential cross-reactivity between HSP and dog epithelium. Mass spectrometry was carried out to identify the protein involved in allergy reactions. RESULTS: Twenty-four percent of the sera from patients with dog epithelium allergy recognized an IgE-binding band of 28 kd in HSP immunoblotting. Mass spectrometry identified this band as the PSA. SDS-PAGE immunoblotting-inhibition showed a complete IgE-binding inhibition when sera from these patients were preincubated with dog dander extract. CONCLUSIONS: IgE cross-reactivity among proteins from dog dander and human PSA is demonstrated."
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