Navigation Links
Studies Ignite Hope for Long-Acting Allergy Vaccines
Date:9/28/2008

New ragweed regimens would be more convenient and effective, researchers say

SUNDAY, Sept. 28 (HealthDay News) -- A vaccine that protects against the miserable symptoms of ragweed allergy for a longer period of time -- and with fewer injections -- could be available in the coming years.

Unlike traditional allergy vaccines that are given weekly for several months, new formulations would require only a few injections and would offer longer-lasting relief.

"What you would hope is that you would get fewer injections less often, less likelihood of an allergic reaction and the same or better improvement in your symptoms," said Dr. William C. Howland III, an allergist and medical director of Lovelace Scientific Resources in Austin, Texas.

Howland has presented research at an American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology meeting showing that just four injections of an investigational ragweed vaccine, called Pollinex Quattro, were safe and effective.

Separately, a research team led by Dr. Peter Creticos, clinical director of the Johns Hopkins Asthma and Allergy Center in Baltimore, has led pilot testing of another ragweed vaccine, called Tolamba, developed by Berkeley, Calif.-based Dynavax Technologies Corp. Those results were published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine.

"Our study was able to demonstrate that after a concise six-week, six-injection regimen, we were able to shut off seasonal symptoms for at least the two seasons we followed the patients in the study," Creticos said.

Ragweed is a type of weed that grows throughout the United States but is most common in the eastern states and in the Midwest. Among Americans who are allergic to pollen-producing plants, 75 percent are allergic to this particular weed, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.

Ragweed season typically runs from mid-August to October and is a significant cause of fall allergy symptoms, says the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

Antihistamines help some people achieve relief from their symptoms, including runny or stuffy noses, sneezing, and itchy eyes, nose and throat. But when these medications don't work, allergy shots are the next line of treatment.

Allergy vaccines are highly effective but have certain drawbacks, allergists say, including the number of shots required to build up an immune response.

"It takes between six and 18 months of weekly injections to reach the maximum effect, so people are coming in every week, and they get an injection," Howland explained.

In addition, it's recommended that patients wait in their doctor's office 30 minutes after each injection to be monitored for any adverse reactions that may occur.

The new wave of investigational vaccines have been tweaked to be more effective in fewer doses and to reduce the incidence of immediate side effects.

Early results look promising.

Howland and his colleagues, for example, studied different doses of a ragweed extract and their effect on antibodies in the bloodstream. People with allergies produce an antibody called immunoglobulin E, which sets off a cascade of chemicals to fend off a perceived allergen, such as ragweed. This chemical response triggers the allergic symptoms that people experience. Another antibody in blood, called immunoglobulin G, fights infection.

"What the study showed was that the G antibodies increased proportionate to the strength of the injections given," he said. "So, the weaker injection had less of an effect, and then the medium had more, and the highest dose had the highest effect on the G antibodies."

However, don't expect new-and-improved vaccines to pop up in your doctor's office this ragweed season. Vaccine makers have to clear several hurdles first.

Allergy Therapeutics PLC, the U.K.-based maker of the Pollinex Quattro vaccine, reported that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had placed a "hold" on its clinical studies while the agency reviewed a report of a rare adverse event. The company noted that a physician involved said the event was "possibly related" to the study drug. Last November, the company said it had met with the FDA, submitted information, and would continue to work with the agency to lift the hold.

Meanwhile, Creticos said a large, multi-center trial replicated findings of the Tolamba pilot study that his team led. Additional studies are continuing.

Dr. Thomas B. Casale, chief of the Division of Allergy and Immunology at Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, Neb., expects it will take another couple of years for these vaccines to become available, assuming, he added, that the next wave of clinical trials show that these approaches are safe and effective.

Until there are better treatments, people with ragweed allergy can minimize their exposure by keeping windows in their cars and homes closed to prevent pollen from drifting in, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. And take a shower after spending time outdoors, because pollen can collect on your hair and skin.

More information

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America can tell you more about outdoor allergies.



SOURCES: Thomas B. Casale, M.D., professor of medicine, and chief, Division of Allergy and Immunology, Creighton University School of Medicine; Omaha, Neb.; William C. Howland III, M.D., allergist, and medical director, Lovelace Scientific Resources, Austin, Texas; Peter Creticos, M.D., clinical director, Johns Hopkins Asthma and Allergy Center, Baltimore; Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, Washington, D.C.; American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, Milwaukee; Allergy Therapeutics PLC, West Sussex, United Kingdom; Dynavax Technologies Corporation, Berkeley, Calif.


'/>"/>
Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Gene Studies of Male-Female Differences Often Flawed
2. Two studies published in the Lancet
3. Study of Studies Finds No Risk to Children From Phthalates in Toys
4. Just Completed Studies Reveal Impact of New Medicare Reimbursement Regulations
5. Studies Prove Exercise Can Heal the Body Mind and Soul
6. Studies Shed New Light on Breast Cancer, Treatment
7. Multi-Year Compendium of Pharmaceutical Case Studies Available from Best Practices, LLC
8. Genomic Health Announces Multiple Studies on Oncotype DX(TM) Presented at 2007 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Breast Cancer Symposium
9. Best Practice Database: Complimentary Excerpt of Three Sales Force Excellence Studies
10. Major Pharma Clinical Case Studies From Amgen, AstraZeneca, GSK, Intermune, Cephalon Inc, Sunesis Pharmaceuticals and Dartmouth Medical School During Fall Clinical Focused Programs
11. NIH awards Einstein multimillion dollar grant to extend studies of exceptional longevity
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/17/2017)... York, NY (PRWEB) , ... January 17, 2017 , ... ... grand opening of a new showroom at South Dixie Hwy in Miami, FL. , ... Officer at Gym Source. “The new innovative in-store concept is designed to give clients ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... ... ... For breast cancer clinicians and researchers who were unable to attend the ... review and analysis of its highlights, a novel half-day, complimentary meeting—the 14th Annual Best ... February 4, 2017 in Chicago. Chaired by Kathy S. Albain, MD, FACP, FASCO from ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... ... January 17, 2017 , ... Healthful Balance announces ... company, owned and operated by Ed Stroup, was created to offer the highest ... highest level of customer service. Healthful Balance products can be purchased online through ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... Petersburg, Florida (PRWEB) , ... January 17, 2017 , ... ... the Producers of AsSeenOnTV.pro will be featuring DRTV campaigns regarding the topic of Beauty ... to become a better version of themselves. What better way to commit to these ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... ... January 17, 2017 , ... ... century approach to infusing high speed technology into the fabric of an entire ... the advancement of healthcare and wellness in a yet-to-be-named, health focused campus. Leading ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/18/2017)... LONDON , January 18, 2017 ... community to share research resources, has opened its first North ... . ... This marks an expansion for Ximbio following its launch in ... Cancer Research Technology (CRT), the commercialization arm of the foundation ...
(Date:1/18/2017)... 2017 After the recent election cycle, ... of cannabis both for medical and recreational purposes are shifting. ... to the use of cannabis, but the focus is coming ... Market Research, the North American legal cannabis market posted $6.7 ... year. The research projects sales will grow at a compound ...
(Date:1/18/2017)... , Jan. 18, 2017  Astellas Pharma Inc. ... ) today announced its participation in Access Accelerated, ... non-communicable disease (NCD) prevention, diagnostics and treatment in ... other leading pharmaceutical companies and in collaboration with ... International Cancer Control (UICC), Astellas will work towards ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: