Years of research are bringing those who suffer from food allergies closer to therapies that can reduce or eliminate their need to avoid particular foods altogether.

Robert Wood, chief of allergy and immunology at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, confirmed with MedPage Today that for the time being strict avoidance remains the best practice for managing food allergies.

“We’re building on studies that we’ve done over the last 7 or 8 years,” explained Wood, who is a leading figure in the NIH-funded Consortium for Food Allergy Research. “Hopefully it improves ways of delivering immunotherapy to maximize both efficacy and safety.”

Wood highlighted six new areas of development in the field.

Among those that seem to improve the safety of therapy are patches that introduce allergens through the skin rather than orally. “It’s still going to be much safer,” Wood said. “It’s really because the amount of allergen that’s being absorbed systematically is much lower” than with oral immunotherapy.

Read about the other methods, including the practice of baking allergenic food, beginning treatment early, attacking multiple allergens at once and the complex practice of modifying reaction-causing proteins, here.

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.


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