Q:

3/25/2015  
Has there been any cases of food allergy to Sacha Inchi seed? I have a few patients that take it and also a few with peanut allergy and I am wondering about cross-reactivity?

A:


I am not aware of reports of Sacha Inchi seed allergy from ingestion. There is an interesting short report of rhinitis from apparent aerosolized exposure to Sacha Inchi seed used in cosmetics (Bueso, Armando, Rosa Rodríguez-Perez, and Marta Rodríguez. "Occupational Allergic Rhinoconjunctivitis" (2010)). This group described prick testing with an extract prepared by mixing 10 mg of crushed seeds per one ml of saline and a “prick-to-prick” test with Sacha Inchi seed. The test was reported to be positive but no controls were described. The authors performed polyacrylamide blotting and identified 4 stronger IgE binding bands (8, 10, 27, 39 kDa) and 4 weaker IgE binding bands (12, 15, 17, 39 kDa).

In summary, Sacha Inchi seed allergy would seem like a possibility. I would not expect any cross reactivity with peanut.

I am sharing this response with Dr. Scott Sicherer, faculty member at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and the Jaffe Food Allergy Institute, for his expertise.

Dr. Sicherer has responded:
"I cannot locate any reports of documented allergy to Sacha Inchi seed ingestion in Medline, although a colleague from Peru has mentioned this possibility and there have been undocumented reports. This also goes by names such as Peruvian peanut or Jungle peanut. While it is a seed, and not a bean, I am not aware of published studies on the potential for cross reactivity with peanut, other seeds, nuts, beans, etc. A preliminary unpublished report from Peru suggested a lack of cross reactivity with peanut. Based on general principles, I would suspect as this rises in popularity, we will see allergic reactions, although perhaps not from cross reacting peanut proteins.”

I hope this information is of help to you and your patient.

All my best.
Dennis K. Ledford, MD, FAAAAI

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