Evaluation of Bar, Barnase, and Barstar recombinant proteins expressed in genetically engineered Brassica juncea (Indian mustard) for potential risks of food allergy using bioinformatics and literature searches

Vasanthi Siruguri, Dinesh Kumar Bharatraj, Raju Naik Vankudavath, Vishnu Vardhana Rao Mendu, Vibha Gupta, Richard E. Goodman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations


The potential allergenicity of Bar, Barnase, and Barstar recombinant proteins expressed in genetically engineered mustard for pollination control in plant breeding was evaluated for regulatory review. To evaluate the potential allergenicity of the Bar, Barnase and Barstar proteins amino acid sequence comparisons were made to those of known and putative allergens, and search for published evidence to the sources of the genes using the AllergenOnline.org database. Initial comparisons in 2012 were performed with version 12 by methods recommended by the Codex Alimentarius Commission and the Indian Council of Medical Research, Government of India. Searches were repeated with version 15 in 2015. A literature search was performed using PubMed to identify reports of allergy associated with the sources of the three transgenes. Potential open reading frames at the DNA insertion site were evaluated for matches to allergens. No significant sequence identity matches were identified with Bar, Barnase or Barstar proteins or potential fusion peptides at the genomic-insert junctions compared to known allergens. No references were identified that associated the sources of the genes with allergy. Based on these results we conclude that the Bar, Barnase and Barstar proteins are unlikely to present any significant risk of food allergy to consumers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)93-102
Number of pages10
JournalFood and Chemical Toxicology
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2015



  • Allergenicity
  • Bar
  • Barnase
  • Barstar
  • Bioinformatics
  • GM crops

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Toxicology

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