Study: Skin patch could help kids with peanut al­ler­gies

Malta Independent - - HEALTH -

A wear­able skin patch may help chil­dren who are al­ler­gic to peanuts by de­liv­er­ing small doses of peanut pro­tein, ac­cord­ing to a new study that calls for the ther­apy to be fur­ther ex­plored.

The study, pub­lished in the Jour­nal of Al­lergy and Clin­i­cal Im­munol­ogy, found that nearly half of those treated with the Vi­askin Peanut patch for one year were able to con­sume at least 10 times more peanut pro­tein than they were able to prior to treat­ment.

The big­gest ben­e­fit came for those from 4 years old to 11 years old. Par­tic­i­pants older than 12 didn’t see as much of an ef­fect, the study found.

The ther­apy works by train­ing the im­mune sys­tem to tol­er­ate small amounts of peanuts, said Dr. Daniel Rotrosen, of the Na­tional In­sti­tute of Al­lergy and In­fec­tious Dis­eases, part of the Na­tional In­sti­tutes of Health, which is fund­ing the on­go­ing clin­i­cal trial.

“Other re­cent ad­vances have re­lied on an oral route that ap­pears dif­fi­cult for ap­prox­i­mately 10 to 15 per­cent of chil­dren and adults to tol­er­ate,” Rotrosen said.

While the trial found the im­munother­apy treat­ment to be “po­ten­tially ef­fec­tive,” it cau­tioned that the study is lim­ited. Fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion is needed to find out if “the mod­est clin­i­cal changes noted will be en­hanced af­ter a longer du­ra­tion of ther­apy,” the study said.

Those long-term re­sults should be avail­able in the fu­ture be­cause the trial is con­tin­u­ing.

The Vi­askin Peanut patch hasn’t been ap­proved by the Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion.

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