Maternal triacylglycerol signature and risk of food allergy in offspring

Xiumei Hong, Liming Liang, Qi Sun, Corinne A. Keet, Hui Ju Tsai, Yuelong Ji, Guoying Wang, Hongkai Ji, Clary Clish, Colleen Pearson, You Wang, Robert A. Wood, Frank B. Hu, Xiaobin Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: The prevalence of IgE-mediated food allergy (FA) is increasing worldwide, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Objective: We sought to examine the role of maternal lipidomic profiles in risk of FA development in offspring and to investigate the potential modification effects by timing of first solid-food introduction. Methods: This report included 1068 mother-child dyads from the Boston Birth Cohort. Maternal lipid metabolites in plasma were assessed by using liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. Food sensitization (FS) was defined as a specific IgE level of 0.35 kU/L or greater to any of the 8 common food allergens determined by using ImmunoCAP. FA was defined based on FS, clinical symptoms, and food avoidance. Logistic regression was applied to analyze associations between maternal metabolites and risk of FS and FA in offspring and to explore potential effect modifications. Results: Of the 1068 children, 411 had FS, and 132 had FA. Among the 209 metabolites, maternal triacylglycerols (TAGs) of shorter carbon chains and fewer double bonds were associated with greater risk of FA, whereas TAGs of longer carbon chains and more double bonds were significantly associated with lower risk of FA in offspring. These associations were stronger in children with delayed solid-food introduction (≥7 months of age) than those with earlier solid-food introduction (P =.010 for interaction between the maternal TAG score and timing of solid-food introduction). No significant association was found for FS. Conclusion: This is the first study to demonstrate a link between maternal TAGs and risk of FA in offspring and potential risk modification by timing of solid-food introduction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)729-737
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2019


  • Food allergy
  • lipidomics
  • timing of first solid-food introduction
  • triacylglycerol

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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