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Immunomodulation by food: promising concept for mitigating allergic disease?

Wichers H - Anal Bioanal Chem (2009)

Bottom Line: This concept can be utilised in attempts to prevent or mitigate allergic reactions via the development of targeted food products or ingredients.This review describes recent findings with respect to food products and ingredients that show potential in this respect, with special emphasis on pro- and prebiotics, beta-glucans and fungal immunomodulatory proteins.What all of these approaches have in common is that they appear to strengthen Th1-mediated immunity, thus possibly restoring defective immune maturation due to overly hygienic living conditions: a little bit of dirt does not seem bad!

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Agrotechnology and Food Sciences Group, Department of Cell Biology and Immunology, Wageningen University and Research Centre, PO Box 17, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands. harry.wichers@wur.nl

ABSTRACT
The importance of a properly functioning and well-balanced immune system for maintaining health has become strikingly evident over the past decades. Roughly since World War II, there has been an apparent decrease in the prevalence of "traditional" infectious diseases, with a concomitant increase in immune-related disorders, such as allergies. Causally, a relationship with changes in life-style-related factors such as the increasing use of hygienic practices seems likely. Diet and nutrition can affect the functioning of various immune parameters. This concept can be utilised in attempts to prevent or mitigate allergic reactions via the development of targeted food products or ingredients. This review describes recent findings with respect to food products and ingredients that show potential in this respect, with special emphasis on pro- and prebiotics, beta-glucans and fungal immunomodulatory proteins. What all of these approaches have in common is that they appear to strengthen Th1-mediated immunity, thus possibly restoring defective immune maturation due to overly hygienic living conditions: a little bit of dirt does not seem bad!

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Sequence alignment of FIPs from various sources, demonstrating homology; see text
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Fig2: Sequence alignment of FIPs from various sources, demonstrating homology; see text

Mentions: FIPs are 15 kDa proteins of (as far as we are aware so far) fungal origin. A number of FIPs have been described in some detail, including those from Flammulina velutipes (golden needle mushroom; FIP-fve), Volvariella volvacea ((paddy) straw mushroom; FIP-vvo), Ganoderma lucidum and G. tsugae (Japanese lacquer mushroom; LZ-8 and FIP-gts, resp.), which are composed of 114 (FIP-fve), 110 (LZ-8 and FIP-Gts) and 112 (FIP-vvo) amino acids, respectively, and share high sequence homology ([65] and Fig. 2). FIP-fve was crystallised and its X-ray structure determined [65, 66]; it was found to be a homodimer where each subunit comprises a pair of N-terminal secondary structural elements, an α-helix followed by a β-strand linked to a domain consisting almost exclusively of β-sheets adopting an Ig-like fold, with α-helix, β-strand and loop fractions of respectively 11.3, 42.6 and 46.1% [66]. The α-helices HA and HB are amphipathic and the side chains of the amino acids on the hydrophobic face of one helix pack well against those of the other α-helix, enabling them to bind via hydrophobic interactions. Lin et al. [68] predicted that the N-terminal residues 1–13 of FIP-Gts formed an α-helix, and they found that recombinant mutants of FIP-Gts in which residues 1–13 (the N-terminal α-helix) were deleted were incapable of dimerisation. Triple mutants in which Leu5, Phe7 and Leu9 were deleted lost their amphipathic character, the ability to form dimers with themselves and with the wild-type FIP-Gts protein, suggesting that this property was important for immunomodulatory activity [67, 68]. FIPs show lectin-like properties, as they are able to agglutinate erythrocytes, and it was suggested that they should be classified as such [67].Fig. 2


Immunomodulation by food: promising concept for mitigating allergic disease?

Wichers H - Anal Bioanal Chem (2009)

Sequence alignment of FIPs from various sources, demonstrating homology; see text
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2724636&req=5

Fig2: Sequence alignment of FIPs from various sources, demonstrating homology; see text
Mentions: FIPs are 15 kDa proteins of (as far as we are aware so far) fungal origin. A number of FIPs have been described in some detail, including those from Flammulina velutipes (golden needle mushroom; FIP-fve), Volvariella volvacea ((paddy) straw mushroom; FIP-vvo), Ganoderma lucidum and G. tsugae (Japanese lacquer mushroom; LZ-8 and FIP-gts, resp.), which are composed of 114 (FIP-fve), 110 (LZ-8 and FIP-Gts) and 112 (FIP-vvo) amino acids, respectively, and share high sequence homology ([65] and Fig. 2). FIP-fve was crystallised and its X-ray structure determined [65, 66]; it was found to be a homodimer where each subunit comprises a pair of N-terminal secondary structural elements, an α-helix followed by a β-strand linked to a domain consisting almost exclusively of β-sheets adopting an Ig-like fold, with α-helix, β-strand and loop fractions of respectively 11.3, 42.6 and 46.1% [66]. The α-helices HA and HB are amphipathic and the side chains of the amino acids on the hydrophobic face of one helix pack well against those of the other α-helix, enabling them to bind via hydrophobic interactions. Lin et al. [68] predicted that the N-terminal residues 1–13 of FIP-Gts formed an α-helix, and they found that recombinant mutants of FIP-Gts in which residues 1–13 (the N-terminal α-helix) were deleted were incapable of dimerisation. Triple mutants in which Leu5, Phe7 and Leu9 were deleted lost their amphipathic character, the ability to form dimers with themselves and with the wild-type FIP-Gts protein, suggesting that this property was important for immunomodulatory activity [67, 68]. FIPs show lectin-like properties, as they are able to agglutinate erythrocytes, and it was suggested that they should be classified as such [67].Fig. 2

Bottom Line: This concept can be utilised in attempts to prevent or mitigate allergic reactions via the development of targeted food products or ingredients.This review describes recent findings with respect to food products and ingredients that show potential in this respect, with special emphasis on pro- and prebiotics, beta-glucans and fungal immunomodulatory proteins.What all of these approaches have in common is that they appear to strengthen Th1-mediated immunity, thus possibly restoring defective immune maturation due to overly hygienic living conditions: a little bit of dirt does not seem bad!

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Agrotechnology and Food Sciences Group, Department of Cell Biology and Immunology, Wageningen University and Research Centre, PO Box 17, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands. harry.wichers@wur.nl

ABSTRACT
The importance of a properly functioning and well-balanced immune system for maintaining health has become strikingly evident over the past decades. Roughly since World War II, there has been an apparent decrease in the prevalence of "traditional" infectious diseases, with a concomitant increase in immune-related disorders, such as allergies. Causally, a relationship with changes in life-style-related factors such as the increasing use of hygienic practices seems likely. Diet and nutrition can affect the functioning of various immune parameters. This concept can be utilised in attempts to prevent or mitigate allergic reactions via the development of targeted food products or ingredients. This review describes recent findings with respect to food products and ingredients that show potential in this respect, with special emphasis on pro- and prebiotics, beta-glucans and fungal immunomodulatory proteins. What all of these approaches have in common is that they appear to strengthen Th1-mediated immunity, thus possibly restoring defective immune maturation due to overly hygienic living conditions: a little bit of dirt does not seem bad!

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus