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November 30, 2006

Good News Regarding Peanut Allergy Research

This is good news. I recently read a WebMD article about a two-year pilot study conducted by researchers at Duke University and the University of Arkansas regarding gradually introducing food allergens into the diets of children who are highly allergic in an effort to desensitize them.

A study is under way involving children with peanut allergies, which more often trigger potentially life-threatening allergic reactions. I seem to recall similar studies about 5 years ago that were called off due to the death of a subject after being exposed to a miniscual amount of peanut protein. I pray that this research continues to make progress and that all the children are kept safe.

Early findings suggest that this gradual challenge approach increases tolerance to problem foods. At the begining of the peanut allergy study, kids children were given the equivalent of 1/3,000 of a peanut. Within six months, most of the subjects were eating a peanut a day with little reaction.

Researcher A. Wesley Burks, MD is quoted as saying, 'Some children who had allergic reactions to literally a thousandth of a peanut at the beginning of the study had no reaction later on when challenged with 15 peanuts.' Sound like they are making great progress on the food allergy research front and I look forward to further results.

Posted by David at November 30, 2006 8:22 AM


I'm a new visitor to this site, my child was just diagnosed with serious allergies to foods such as egg, soy, dairy, and nuts. I am of course a wreck, but I am enjoying reading your blog very much, and appreciate the updates, sense of humor, and level-headed approach. Thank you!

Posted by: Andrea at December 3, 2006 9:17 AM

Another comment from me. I'm very interested in the Italian hospital that is highlighted on this website: www.allergyhope.com

They are apparently having success with desensitizing life threatening food allergies, although they don't work with peanuts.

Posted by: Laura F. at December 7, 2006 2:01 PM