Ask Dr. Nandi: What test results showing vaccine suppresses peanut allergy means

Posted at 5:24 PM, Apr 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-11 17:24:17-04

This study is remarkable and could be a total game changer. Peanut allergies are one of the most common food allergies and generally you’ll have it for your entire life.  

This means you have to be extra vigilant about checking ingredient lists because peanuts can be found in very surprising places.  And allergic reactions are not only unpredictable, they can be life-threatening.  

This study is very significant because there has not been a lot of research in the food allergy field which has exploded in recent years.  

To give you an idea, every three minutes someone goes to the emergency room because of a food allergy. So we really need effective treatments and this study is showing a lot of potential. 

The reason why mice are commonly used in research is because their biological, genetic and behavior characteristics closely resemble ours.  So many symptoms we have can be replicated in mice.  

But that doesn’t mean because it works in mice, it’ll work on humans.  

In this particular study, the researchers plan to do further studies in mice and then hopefully will have clinical trials with humans later down the road.

What’s great about this study is that it has the potential in the future to provide long-lasting suppression for people with existing allergies, but right now the only way to avoid an allergic reaction is to avoid peanuts.  

But everyone needs to be mindful when it comes to peanut allergies so here are my prescriptions:

  1. If you don’t have a peanut allergy, be aware you can cause an unintentional reaction by eating peanut foods out in public. Just a little bit transferred onto an object can then get picked up by someone with a peanut allergy which then causes them to have an allergic reaction. 
  2. Be aware that eating peanuts can create peanut dust.  And that can also cause allergic reactions.
  3. If you’re highly allergic to peanuts, please wear a medical bracelet or necklace. Wash your hands often and avoid rubbing your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  4. Many fatal food allergic reactions happen outside the home.  Those who are allergic should always carry epinephrine as it’s the only effective treatment that can stop a serious allergic reaction.