Time to Say Goodbye to Peanut Allergies?

Feb 17, 2009

Children in the UK who were highly allergic to peanuts can now eat small amounts without a reaction. A new study just released in the journal Allergy gave small daily doses of peanut flour to peanut allergic children over a number of weeks and found that they were ‘desensitized’ to the allergen.

It is called Oral Immunotherapy (OIT) and it appeared to work well in ALL subjects, including one who had previously experienced anaphylactic shock.

The therapy greatly expanded the children’s tolerance and provided protection against eating up to 10 peanuts, which is much more than they would encounter during accidental ingestion.

This intervention could be extremely valuable to children with severe peanut allergy and/or those who have reactions when exposed to very small amounts.

This exciting research is very new and is part of an emerging field of ongoing research related to allergy and to peanut allergy. This approach should not be attempted at home as additional studies need to be carried out to confirm what is safe for larger populations. However, it is extremely promising, especially since it worked with all of the children.

The Peanut Institute is a non-profit organization that supports nutrition research and develops educational programs to encourage healthful lifestyles.