+
For Patients & Caregivers
For Lab Professionals
Welcome! Click here for Patient or Laboratory Professional content
Are you a healthcare professional?

The information in this website is intended only for healthcare professionals. By entering this site, you are confirming that you are a healthcare professional.

Are you a laboratory professional?

The information in this website is intended only for laboratory professionals. By entering this site, you are confirming that you are a laboratory professional.

Pork-Cat Syndrome: Using component testing to solve the mystery

Abigail, a 19-year-old woman, visits her healthcare provider for guidance on her chronic gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms associated with eating meat.*

Her healthcare provider conducts a full clinical history and physical examination and decides to evaluate specific IgE sensitizations using both whole allergens and allergen components including alpha-Gal.

Abigail has chronic GI issues. What did specific IgE blood testing reveal?

Patient History

Family History

  • None

Abigail's Personal History

  • Abigail has a diagnosed cat allergy
  • A history, although not recent, of tick bites

 

Abigail's ImmunoCAP™ Test Results

These results together with this patient's case history and symptoms, help confirm the diagnosis.

 

ImmunoCAP Test Results (kUA/I)
Test Type Abigail's Results
alpha-Gal Allergen Component 0.13
Cat Dander Whole Allergen >100.00
Cat Serum Albumin Fel d 2 Allergen Component 29.50
Pork Serum Albumin Allergen Component 18.60
Total IgE   1406.00

Differential Diagnosis

Abigail has very low IgE levels to alpha-Gal, but has significant/high IgE to cat dander, cat serum albumin (Fel d 2), and pork serum albumin. Her GI symptoms could be explained by her sensitization to albumin, a protein that's found in both cat dander and in pork.1,2

 

REFINED DIAGNOSIS

  • Abigail’s component sensitization profile confirms pork-cat syndrome, a primary cat dander sensitization that gives rise to cross-reactivity between cat serum albumin and pork serum albumin.2, 3

HEALTHCARE PROVIDER MANAGEMENT PLAN

  • Abigail’s healthcare provider referred her to a dietitian for help in adjusting her diet.
  • Abigail was advised to strictly avoid pork.

FOLLOW UP

  • With a diet avoiding pork, Abigail’s chronic GI issues have been absent for several months.

The people, places, and events depicted in these case studies and photographs do not represent actual patients, nor are they affiliated in any way with Thermo Fisher Scientific.

 

*This case study was adapted from Platts-Mills T, Li R, Keshavarz B, Smith A, Wilson J. Diagnosis and Management of Patients with the α-Gal Syndrome. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. 2020;8(1):15-23.e1.

References
  1. Platts-Mills T, Li R, Keshavarz B, Smith A, Wilson J. Diagnosis and Management of Patients with the α-Gal Syndrome. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. 2020;8(1):15-23.e1.
  2. Tripathi A, Commins SP, Heymann PW, Platts-Mills TA. Delayed anaphylaxis to red meat masquerading as idiopathic anaphylaxis. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract. 2014 May-Jun;2(3):259-65.
  3. Posthumus J, James HR, Lane CJ, Matos LA, Platts-Mills TA, Commins SP. Initial description of pork-cat syndrome in the United States. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2013;131:923-5.