Mount Sinai licenses mapping platform for food allergy detection

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Mount Sinai Health System is working with data diagnostic firm AllerGenis to develop technology to improve food allergy detection.

More than 30 million people in the United States and Europe have food allergies, with one in 13 children at risk for life-threatening anaphylaxis, which is a severe reaction.

Mount Sinai has licensed its proprietary epitope mapping platform to AllerGenis. Epitope mapping is the process of identifying the binding site of an antibody on a target antigen, which is a substance that induces an immune response in the body and is instrumental in development of this new level of diagnostics.

“We are pleased to partner with AllerGenis on a research discovery with the potential to alleviate highly detrimental allergic reactions in both children and adults,” says Erik Lium, executive vice president of Mount Sinai Innovation Partners. “This technology exemplifies Mount Sinia’s commitment to innovation and translational research.”

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AllerGenis will use the Mount Sinai platform to bring diagnostics to clinicians treating patients with food allergies. The first product being offered to clinicians is a peanut allergy assay available in the fall of 2019; that will be followed by assays for milk, eggs, shellfish and tree nuts. An assay is the presence of and amount of a substance.

The epitope platform of Mount Sinai subdivides protein allergens into smaller peptides, called epitopes, and measures the reactivity of a patient’s antibody levels to the epitopes. Each patient has a unique reactivity signature.

“AllerGenis’ diagnostic technology using epitope mapping is expected to accurately diagnose patients with food allergies and also markedly decrease misdiagnosis,” says Hugh Sampson, MD, director emeritus of the Elliot and Roslyn Jaffee Food Allergy Institute at Mount Sinai.

AllerGenis now is developing a database of human epitope signatures to make it easier for clinicians to assess and manage patients with food allergies.

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