Cure for peanut allergy in sight after world first trial

Faith Castro
August 22, 2017

The Lancet Child and Adolescent Health journal published that from about 4 years on 70 percent people are able to take peanuts without any allergic reaction before which over 80 percent of people gone through the treatment has shown immediate decrease in allergic reactions.

Food allergies have risen by about 350% in recent decades, and while most allergies can often be resolved during childhood this is not the case with peanuts.

Australian researchers have made a breakthrough in the treatment of deadly peanut allergies in children.

Professor Mimi Tang of the Murdoch Children's Research Institute stated "These findings suggest our treatment is effective in inducing long-term intolerance, up to four years after completing treatment and is safe".

Importantly, their desensitisation to peanuts persisted for up to four years after treatment.

"We visited the allergist the first time [and] he said "sorry, you're going to have to go home and empty your pantry out, clear it of all nuts, anything with nuts in it", Oliver's mother Tanya told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

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'These children had been eating peanut freely in their diet without having to follow any particular program of peanut intake in the years after treatment was completed, ' she said.

"The probiotic acts on the immune system, encourages the immune system to generate a protective, or tolerance, response rather than allergy", Professor Tang said.

Studies previously conducted on the problem have suggested that such treatment methods could be fruitful in reducing children's allergic anaphylactic shock reactions to peanuts, according to reports.

The treatment consists in the association of a probiotic and immunotherapy oral.

It's thought combining probiotics with the immunotherapy gives the immune system the "nudge" it needs, Prof Tang said. The treated children had received a combination of Lactobacillus rhamnosus, a bacteria found in some yogurts and soft cheeses, a peanut protein in increasing doses, for 18 months.

"The importance of this finding is that these children were able to eat peanuts like children who don't have peanut allergy and still maintain their tolerant state, protected against reactions to peanuts", she said. The PPOIT treatment could not only change the way peanut allergies are treated, but it also holds important implications for attacking other modern food allergies.

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