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2019/20 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

FOOD5235M Food and the Allergic Reaction

10 creditsClass Size: 100

Module manager: Prof Alan Mackie

Taught: Semester 1 View Timetable

Year running 2019/20

This module is not approved as an Elective


On completion of this module, students should be able to understand the elements and concepts of the immunology involved with allergic reactions, the symptoms of allergic responses, how regulations governing allergens in food have evolved, how allergenic foods are detected, how scientistsare trying to minimise the number and severity of allergic reactions, and how biotechnologyis relevent to allergy (e.g. development of diagnositics) and not helpful (e.g. plant biotechnology).

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module, students will have a better understanding of:
- the importance of the immune system in health;
- the IgE-based allergic reaction;
- the science behind treatment and cure;
- regulation of allergens in food and how the industry deals with these;
- detection of allergenic foods;
- why some individuals might develop allergy;
- why some foods might be more allergenic than others;
- how novel food proteins are assessed for allergenicity.


- The normal immune response;
- Immunoassays and detection of food proteins;
- The allergic reaction and consequent symptoms;
- Diagnosis;
- The production of IgG and IgE;
- Characterisation of food allergen molecules;
- The Hygeine Hypothesis;
- Development of immune tolerance;
- Regulations for allergenic foods.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Independent online learning hours10.00
Private study hours72.00
Total Contact hours18.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)100.00

Private study

The directed reading will be a recent reserach paper on which the students will have to answer a compulsory examination question; students will be expected to understand the background to the research, what has been achieved and how the research fits into wider understanding.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Students will receive 3 lots of MCQs after each 1/3 of the teaching so that they can monitor their progress.

Methods of assessment

Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Standard exam (closed essays, MCQs etc)2 hr 00 mins100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 04/09/2019


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