Call for partners: Predictive model for the sensitising capacity of novel nutritional proteins

Aiming to develop products with novel proteins? Also wondering if these novel proteins are allergenic? Join the consortium with this project initiative on potential allergenicity of protein sources!

Sustainability considerations make it inevitable that ‘novel’, potentially allergenic, proteins will be included into the human diet in the forthcoming years. Often, such products have been heat-processed, which is known to increase protein immunogenicity, and a pre-stage for potential allergenicity. It is inevitable that novel food allergies will develop, for which an attempt must be made to minimise the risks.


In this project, in vitro models for key events in the development of an allergic reaction will be set-up. Such key events will be based upon the Adverse Outcome Pathway analysis that has been made for allergies by the ImpARAS-consortium. Based on thorough analysis of the predictive relevance of these key events, or combinations thereof, the best-predicting in vitro-assay(s) will be incorporated in organ-on-a-chip devices, to facilitate their eventual use.

Industrial partners that join our forces will gain knowledge about:

  • Screening data of their own sustainable protein concentrate that they bring in
  • What processing steps induce protein modifications that initiate inflammation reactions
  • Which matrix elements (e.g. lipids) may interfere with allergic inflammation

Invitation to collaborate

Research experts from Wageningen Food and Biobased Research, Utrecht University and Erasmus MC, supported by the industry (Nutricia, Nestle, Arla, Cargill, Phycom), are joining forces to develop a decision tree consisting of different cell models to examine the inflammation cascade in our immune system that precedes allergic sensitization by proteins.

This consortium is open for participation from ingredient companies, end product companies, and biotech companies. In return for in-cash and in-kind contributions to the project, partners can specify desired topics for research, and provide direction to the research activities. Unfortunately we are not able to reply to solicitations from research institutes or enquiries from students related to this project.

Want to know more?

Involved experts:

  • Prof. dr. H.J. Wichers, senior researcher Wageningen Food & Biobased Research
  • dr. ir. S.Bastiaan, senior researcher Wageningen Food & Biobased Research
  • dr. Tamara Hoppenbrouwers, senior researcher Wageningen Food & Biobased Research