Navigation Links
Lone Star Tick Bite Might Trigger Red Meat Allergy: Study
Date:11/9/2012

By Denise Mann
HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, Nov. 9 (HealthDay News) -- New research adds to a growing body of evidence that suggests certain tick bites may cause even the most seasoned of carnivores to develop an allergy to red meat.

Here's how it works in humans, experts say: The Lone Star tick, which is found largely in central and southern U.S. regions, injects spit into your body when it bites you. When this occurs, your body develops antibodies to a carbohydrate in the tick's spit that is known as alpha-gal, a carbohydrate that is also present in red meat. The person then eats meat, and an allergic reaction is triggered.

This reaction tends to occur within three to six hours after eating meat, and can range in severity from mild hives and itching to full-blown anaphylactic shock (a potentially deadly reaction).

The new study found that positive alpha-gal rates are actually 32 percent higher in states where the Lone Star tick is known to lurk, compared with other parts of the country. That said, there were higher than expected rates of alpha-gal positivity even in states where the Lone Star tick is not usually seen, the investigators noted.

The findings are to be presented Friday at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) annual meeting, in Anaheim, Calif.

This red meat-tick connection was first discovered when researchers were trying to determine why a certain cancer drug was causing severe allergic reactions in people in the southern states. As it turns out, the sugars in that drug are also present in beef, pork and cow's milk.

"It's called molecular mimicry, and it is fascinating," said Dr. Bruce Hirsch, an infectious diseases specialist at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, N.Y. "This new study substantiates the frequency of this risk."

Climate change may also mean that Lone Star ticks will start appearing in other regions, so the findings "emphasize the importance of preventing tick bites," Hirsch said.

ACAAI president Dr. Stanley Fineman called the tick-meat allergy reaction "unusual."

"It is an immune response to saliva of the tick that they leave behind when they bite, and this study really shows a higher prevalence of positive reactions in areas of the country that are endemic to the Lone Star tick," he said. "It is a bigger problem than we probably realized."

The reaction can occur up to six hours after the person eats the red meat. "Symptoms include hives, or itching in the mouth and swelling in the throat that occur after eating a hamburger [for example]," Fineman explained.

How can you know for sure? "Be a detective," Fineman said. "If you get hives, figure out what you ate just before and if it was a meal with beef, lamb or pork, you should probably check with an allergist, especially if you like to go outside" in areas commonly inhabited by ticks.

Research presented at medical meetings should be viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

More information

Learn how to avoid ticks at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

SOURCES: Stanley Fineman, M.D., allergist, Marietta, Ga.; Bruce Hirsch, M.D., infectious diseases specialist, North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, N.Y.; Nov. 9, 2012, presentation, American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology annual meeting, Anaheim, Calif.


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. New Stool Test Might Aid in Early Detection of Colon Cancer
2. Depo-Provera Birth Control Might Raise Breast Cancer Risk
3. Brain Falters Near End of Life, but Games, Puzzles Might Slow Decline
4. Infection Might Raise Blood Clot Risk for Older Adults: Study
5. Anxiety Might Help People Sniff Out Threats
6. Lung Cancer Screening Might Pay Off, Analysis Shows
7. Mobile Stroke Units Might Trim Time to Treatment
8. Common Plastics Chemical Might Boost Diabetes Risk
9. Media Multitasking Might Have Mental Upside
10. Brain Surgery Might Ease Tough-to-Treat OCD
11. More Smog Might Mean More Hospitalizations
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Lone Star Tick Bite Might Trigger Red Meat Allergy: Study 
(Date:12/5/2016)... ... ... Shah MD, MBA has joined the Retina Group of New York (RGONY) specializing ... M. Maisel, MD and has been providing tertiary medical and surgical retinal care on Long ... expectations amongst her peers. Growing up in a family of doctors, Dr. Shah emulated ...
(Date:12/5/2016)... ... December 05, 2016 , ... Houston ... 2016 Anti-Aging & Beauty Awards at The Aesthetic & Anti-aging Medicine European ... European Congress (AMEC) brings together the industry’s leading scientific experts, speakers, clinicians, ...
(Date:12/4/2016)... ... December 03, 2016 , ... The Lymphoma Research ... lymphoma research and serving the lymphoma community through a comprehensive series of education ... Tasting Event in New York City, with long-time partners The Paul Foundation, on ...
(Date:12/4/2016)... TX (PRWEB) , ... December 03, 2016 , ... ... the “Fastest growing Entrepreneurial Company in the Dallas area” Tuesday evening at the ... Omni Dallas Hotel, presented by SMU's Cox School’s Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship. Dallas ...
(Date:12/4/2016)... ... ... Responsible dental care hinges on regular brushing of the teeth. However, just brushing ... inspired an inventor from Las Vegas, Nev., to design the BRUSH PROPER. , ... bad techniques of brushing the teeth in order to prevent cavities," he said. "Children ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/2/2016)... YORK , December 2, 2016 ... the global cardiac pacemaker market in its upcoming report titled, "Global Market ... Register a Declining CAGR of -1.4% between 2016 and ... 4,100.0 Mn in 2015 and this is likely to ... of revenue, the global cardiac pacemaker market is anticipated ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... According to a new ... Product (Instruments, Reagents, Software), Technology (Immunoassay, Clinical Chemistry, ... Infectious Diseases) - Forecast to 2021" published by ... 60.22 Billion in 2016. This market is expected ... the forecast period (2016-2021) to reach USD 78.74 ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... , Dec. 2, 2016  The Addiction Treatment ... Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP), has released ... better address the opioid addiction crisis, including through ... (MAT). ATAG,s newly released paper, "The ... to Naloxone," addresses many issues around gaps and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: