Allergy Resources

Maize Allergy

Key Allergens

The terms maize and corn are often used interchangeably- maize is the name of the plant that grows corn, which is the product we eat.

There are 5 key allergens associated with maize, 3 of them are classified as airway allergens and 2 food allergens.

Zea m 8 is a chitinase protein. This is a plant derived enzyme made by plants naturally to act as a defence against fungal attacks

Zea m 14 is a lipid transfer protein (LTP).


Maize allergy is seen in conjunction with allergies to other foods presenting as Latex Food Syndrome, which is caused by the body confusing the proteins it encounters in food to that of latex proteins to which it is already sensitised.

LTP's are a group of proteins which can cause more serious allergic reactions in patients, you may suffer from LTP Syndrome if you suffer IgE type allergy symptoms to foods mentioned in the cross reactivity section below.

Cross Reactivity

Those with a sensitivity to chitinase may have linked allergies to foods which contain high levels of chitinase like chestnuts, banana, avocados, papaya, pomegranate, kiwi and tomatoes.

Common foods involved in LTP allergy include kiwi, strawberries, sunflower seeds, walnut, apple, mulberry, banana, pea, apricot, cherry, plum, almond, peach pomegranate, raspberry, tomato, grape, celery, peanut, asparagus, cabbage, broccoli, chestnut, lemon, tangerine, orange, hazelnut, lettuce, lentils, lupin, green bean, pear, mustard, wheat and maize.

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