Navigation Links
Studies show children can complete treatment for peanut allergies and achieve long-term tolerance
Date:3/15/2009

DURHAM, NC -- A carefully administered daily dose of peanuts has been so successful as a therapy for peanut allergies that a select group of children is now off treatment and eating peanuts daily, report doctors at Duke University Medical Center and Arkansas Children's Hospital.

"It appears these children have lost their allergies," says Wesley Burks, MD, Chief of the Division of Pediatric Allergy and Immunology at Duke. "This gives other parents and children hope that we'll soon have a safe, effective treatment that will halt allergies to certain foods."

Long-term tolerance in children with peanut allergies was documented for the first time by the presence of key immunologic changes, according to researchers at Duke and Arkansas Children's Hospital who presented their findings at the American Academy of Asthma and Immunology meeting in Washington, DC today.

Tests of several immunologic indicators suggest the body builds tolerance quickly.

"At the start of the study, these participants couldn't tolerate one-sixth of a peanut," Burks said. "Six months into it, they were ingesting 13 to 15 peanuts before they had a reaction."

About four million Americans have food allergies, and allergies to tree nuts and peanuts are the most common. Life-threatening reactions can occur from exposure to even a trace amount of peanuts, and nearly half of the 150 deaths attributed to food allergies each year are caused by peanut allergies.

Duke and Arkansas Children's Hospital began enrolling patients in studies five years ago to determine if incremental doses of peanut protein could change how the body's immune system responds to its presence. The doses start as small as 1/1000 of a peanut. Eight to 10 months later, the children are ingesting the equivalent of up to 15 peanuts per day. The children stay on that daily therapy for several years and are monitored closely.

Nine of the 33 children participating in the study have been on maintenance therapy for more than 2.5 years. After a series of food challenges, four of those children were taken off the treatment and continue to eat peanuts. Some have been off treatment for more than a year. Doctors keep tabs on any potential changes in their immune system via skin, blood and immune studies.

One of the tests used in the study looks at immunoglobulin E (IgE), a protein the body makes in response to peanut allergens. "If you have it, you're likely allergic, if you don't, you aren't," explained Burks. Children in this study generally started with IgE levels greater than 25. "At the end of the study, their peanut IgEs were less than 2 and have remained that way since we stopped the treatment," he said.

Because the pool of children now off treatment is so small, Burks says it's hard to say whether these children simply outgrew their allergies or if the therapy did something to enhance that outcome. The next step is a blinded study in which children on treatment are compared to a control group. First year results were presented at the meeting by Stacie M. Jones, MD, a pediatric allergist at Arkansas Children's Hospital. So far, the oral immune therapy appears to be working.

"We see initial desensitization effects of the treatment are real," Burks says. "Those children are now able to eat up to 15 peanuts with no reaction, but the children not on treatment have symptoms early on in the study."

Despite the news, Burks insists this research is still ongoing and cautions parents and professionals against trying any version on their own. "In my clinic, I would do the same things I've always done. Once diagnosed with a food allergy, I would recommend they avoid the food. We have to wait for the studies to show the treatment is safe, and to see desensitization start to work. We also want to know the therapy works long term."

Burks also cautions that some people are too sensitive to peanut allergens to be able to undergo the therapy.


'/>"/>

Contact: Debbe Geiger
Debbe.Geiger@duke.edu
919-660-9461
Duke University Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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:8/17/2017)... ... 2017 , ... An August 2 article on NextShark discusses a ... influenced by the growing popularity of “pretty boys” in both K-Pop and television K-Drama. ... male appearance are changing not only in the Asian nation, where plastic surgery has ...
(Date:8/17/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Pot Valet is a leading provider of premium medical-grade cannabis ... state, and soon, every state in the country, the company offers patients safe, legal, ... altogether. , According to Pot Valet, all California patients have the legal ...
(Date:8/17/2017)... ... August 17, 2017 , ... A recent report indicates that ... industry in 2016 cited deficiencies in data integrity. The FDA outlines their expectations for ... , Presented as part of the Beckman Coulter Life Sciences Virtual Trade ...
(Date:8/16/2017)... ... August 16, 2017 , ... An August 3rd article on Reuters covers ... of a report in JAMA (the Journal of the American Medical Association). The study found ... to achieve BMIs under 30, when compared to patients with lower BMIs. At present, weight ...
(Date:8/16/2017)... , ... August 16, 2017 , ... ... is collaborating with a New England student to educate the public on the ... in 2016 for launching the first-ever National Concussion Awareness Day. , Brooke is ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:8/10/2017)... Rehabilitation Network (PRN), acquired the long-standing outpatient rehabilitation clinic, Belmar ... The reputable clinic will continue to be co-owned and managed ... of four clinicians. Lipkin received his doctorate in physical therapy ... of experience with a strong background in manual therapy. ... clinic in and around the Denver ...
(Date:8/7/2017)... WARSAW, Ind. , Aug. 7, 2017 Zimmer ... in musculoskeletal healthcare, today announced that its Board of Directors ... stockholders for the third quarter of 2017. ... will be paid on or about October 27, 2017 to ... September 22, 2017.  Future declarations of dividends are subject to ...
(Date:8/4/2017)... , Aug. 4, 2017 The search ... shortly after a physician/patient consult has long been the ... was a notable focus of the largest meeting of ... according to healthcare market research firm Kalorama Information.  The ... testing (POCT) offerings or related supplies and software were ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: