Biomed´s Spiked Lipocalins

Spiked Lipocalins – no Allergy

Many animal proteins belong to the lipocalin family. They all have a molecular pocket where they carry micronutrients, such as iron complexes or vitamins. We have discovered that only empty lipocalins act as allergens. But, when lipocalins are spiked with micronutrients, like iron-complexes or vitamins, they are tolerated by the immune system and even induce tolerance.

The same principle is true for major plant and fungal allergens. They can act “lipocalin-like”. For instance, the major birch pollen allergen Bet v 1 has a pocket can bind lipophilic micronutrients. Then, Bet v 1 is no more an allergen, but is tolerated by the immune system.

The gold standard to treat allergies is allergen-specific immunotherapy. Thereby, the immune system in repeatedly confronted with the specific allergen by injections or sublingual application. For instance, a birch pollen allergic patient is treated with birch pollen extracts. Conventional Allergen immunotherapy takes at least 3 years. Therefore, allergen immunotherapy has a high patient drop-out rate.

Allergens spiked with iron complexes are much empowered to counterbalance allergy. Biomed´s vision is that this discovery will enhance the efficacy of allergen specific immunotherapy.

Model by Prof. L.F. Pacios, Madrid.

Intellectual property

EP20140150965, 2014-01-13; US201615111162, 2016-07-12; Method and means for diagnosing and treating allergy. Inventors: Franziska Roth-Walter, Erika Jensen-Jarolim. Cristina Gomez-Casado, Araceli Diaz Perales, Luis Fernandez Pacios, Josef Singer.

Key Publications

Bet v 1 from birch pollen is a lipocalin-like protein acting as allergen only when devoid of iron by promoting Th2 lymphocytes. Roth-Walter F, Gomez-Casado C, Pacios LF, Willensdorfer A, Moskovskich A, Einhorn L, Mothes –Luksch N, Roth GA, Singer J, Diaz-Perales A, Jensen-Jarolim E. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2014: Jun 20;289(25):17416-17421. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M114.567875.

Retinoic acid-loading of the major birch pollen allergen Bet v 1 may improve specific allergen immunotherapy: In silico, in vitro and in vivo data in BALB/c mice. Hufnagl K, Afify SM, Braun N, Wagner S, Wallner M, Hauser M, Wiederstein M, Gadermaier G, Wildner S, Redegeld FA, Blokhuis BR, Hofstetter G, Pali-Schöll I, Roth-Walter F, Pacios LF, Jensen-Jarolim E. Allergy. 2020 Aug;75(8):2073-2077. doi: 10.1111/all.14259.

Bet v 1 from birch pollen is a hypoallergen with vitamin D3 in the pocket. Hufnagl K, Kromp L, Bianchini R, Afify SM, Wiederstein M, Redegeld FA, Zuvalova I, Dvorak Z, Hofstetter G, Roth-Walter F, Pacios LF, Jensen-Jarolim E. Allergy. 2021 Aug 14. doi: 10.1111/all.15052.

Binding to Iron Quercetin Complexes increases the antioxidant capacity of the major birch pollen allergen Bet v 1 and reduces Its allergenicity. Regner A, Szepannek N, Wiederstein M , Fakhimahmadi A, Pacios LF, Blokhuis BR , Redegeld FA, Hofstetter G, Dvorak Z, Jensen-Jarolim E, Hufnagl K, Roth-Walter F. Antioxidants 2023, 12, 42.