The key allergen in sunflower seed allergy is Hel a 3. There are 3 other defined allergens linked to airway allergies for sunflowers.
Hel a 3 is a lipid transfer protein (LTP). These proteins are resistant to heat and are found in many types of plants. Patients suffering from a more severe allergy to cooked fruit may be sensitised to this group of proteins.
This allergy can be loosely linked to LTP syndrome. You may be suffering from LTP Syndrome if you have reactions to various fruits, vegetables and nuts and your reactions continue to be severe after you have discarded the peel and have cooked the food.
Common foods involved in LTP allergy include hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts, apples, dried fruit, lettuce and tomatoes.