JUN 19, 2022 3:15 PM PDT

Oral Immunotherapy for Peanut Allergy Most Effective Before 12 Months Old

WRITTEN BY: Annie Lennon

Oral immunotherapy for peanut allergies may be safer and more effective in children under 12 months old than in toddlers and preschoolers. The corresponding study was published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology

Peanut allergy is one of the most common causes of severe allergy attacks. Around 1.1% of the US population have the allergy, equating to 3 million Americans. Previous studies have suggested that oral immunotherapy- consuming gradually increasing amounts of the allergenic food over time- can help preschoolers overcome peanut allergy. 

In the present study, researchers sought to measure the treatment's efficacy in infants- those under 12 months old. To do so, they analyzed the outcomes for 69 infants from a larger cohort of 452 children aged five and under who partook in oral immunotherapy treatment for peanut allergy. 

Treatment involved visiting a pediatric allergist every two weeks for a small peanut dose, with parents providing the same amount daily between visits. After 8- 11 clinical visits, children built up a 'maintenance dose' of 300 mg of peanut protein, or around 1.3 grams of peanuts. Clinicians recorded any symptoms or reactions over the period. 

By the end of the study, 42 infants had completed the buildup period alongside a year of maintenance dosing. At this point, none had more than a mild reaction to a 4,000-gram dose of peanut protein, compared to 7.7% of children aged 1-5 years old who completed the protocol.  

The researchers noted that the treatment worked well for both age groups nevertheless. After a year of eating around a peanut a day, around 80% of children could tolerate 4,000 grams of peanut protein in one sitting- equivalent to about 15 whole peanuts. 

The researchers noted that as a first step for preventing peanut allergies in at-risk children, parents may introduce them to age-appropriate peanut-containing foods from around six months of age, such as peanut flour and peanut butter. Should this fail to work, they then say that oral immunotherapy may be an effective alternative.

 

Sources: Science Daily, The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology

 

About the Author
University College London
Annie Lennon is a writer whose work also appears in Medical News Today, Psych Central, Psychology Today, and other outlets. When she's not writing, she is COO of Xeurix, an HR startup that assesses jobfit from gamified workplace simulations.
You May Also Like
APR 25, 2022
Microbiology
How a Serious Infection Can Cause Mood Disorders
APR 25, 2022
How a Serious Infection Can Cause Mood Disorders
When a pathogen invades the body, the immune system has to mount a response, which involves inflammation. But inflammati ...
APR 28, 2022
Immunology
Lipid Supplement May Reduce Inflammation in MS
APR 28, 2022
Lipid Supplement May Reduce Inflammation in MS
Administration of an inflammation-mediating lipid has shown promise in reducing multiple sclerosis-related inflammation ...
MAY 19, 2022
Drug Discovery & Development
Experimental Drug Shows Promise Against ALS
MAY 19, 2022
Experimental Drug Shows Promise Against ALS
A new experimental drug known as NU-9 may be more effective in treating ALS than existing FDA-approved drugs. The corres ...
MAY 25, 2022
Neuroscience
Exploring Drug Targets in Neurodegenerative Diseases
MAY 25, 2022
Exploring Drug Targets in Neurodegenerative Diseases
Introduction Life expectancy has increased globally over the last several decades. However, longer life expectancy comes ...
JUN 06, 2022
Drug Discovery & Development
Weight loss Surgery Reduces Cancer Risk and Cancer Deaths
JUN 06, 2022
Weight loss Surgery Reduces Cancer Risk and Cancer Deaths
Weight loss achieved via bariatric surgery among adults with obesity is linked to a lower risk of developing cancer and ...
JUN 27, 2022
Plants & Animals
Developing a New Approach to Rabies Vaccination
JUN 27, 2022
Developing a New Approach to Rabies Vaccination
Rabies is a viral disease that can spread through the saliva. Several kinds of animals can get rabies, including humans ...
Loading Comments...