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Hope For Peanut Allergy Sufferers

From today’s Mail Online

A patch to stop peanut allergy sufferers having potentially fatal reactions has been developed by a French firm, and could hit the shelves by in just two years.

The patch administers small amounts of peanut allergens into the outer layers of the skin, which will help sufferers become less sensitive to the nuts over time.

Administering small amounts of allergens to the skin activates the immune system without bringing the allergen into the bloodstream, which could cause an allergic shock.

Over time, as more and more peanut is introduced to the body, the immune system will become used to the allergen.

DBV Technologies, the French biotech company which has developed the patch, hopes it will be launched in 2017.

Pierre-Henri Benhamou, chief executive of company DBV Technologies, said he hopes the patch will cure some people’s allergies, and prevent severe allergic reactions in others.

‘While we believe that some patients will be completely cured by using the patch, the goal here is not to be able to eat a handful of peanuts – but not to risk an acute allergic reaction in case of accidental ingestion of peanut,’ he told Forbes magazine.

‘We are working on developing what are called “biomarkers”, which will allow practitioners to monitor the progress of the desensitisation process and advise the patients when they will be able to lower their level of vigilance, especially towards the “may contain” products.’

Following ‘encouraging’ initial trial results, DBV hopes to start clinical trials in larger groups of patients in 2016

The company would not comment on the potential price of the patch, but analysts estimate it will exceed $3,500 (£,2234) per patient per year.

Allergy UK claims peanut allergies now affect 1 in 50 young infants, and adds studies show the rate of peanut allergy has doubled over a five year period both in Europe and in the U.S.

Peanut allergies have lifelong effects and are often associated with psychological traumas, including fear of eating, antisocial behavior and anxiety, according to DBV Technologies.

It claims the quality of life in children with peanut allergy is more impaired than in children with diabetes. In the U.S., the average consumer eats more than 6lb of peanut products a year, mainly in the form of peanut butter.Mr Benhamou believes Viaskin Peanut could be a ‘blockbuster’, earning the company over $1 billion in global sales.

DBV also develops patches for milk and dust mite allergies, but analysts estimate 75 per cent of the company’s value comes from its peanut patch.The company is issuing 2.67 million new shares worldwide will it hopes will raise at least 90 million euros ($114 million or around £70 million).

‘This fundraising will enable us to significantly strengthen our structures in France, notably in research and development,’ Mr Benhamou told Reuters


Don’t Let Allergies Ruin Your Christmas

We all want a merry Christmas, with no stress and a big family dinner. However, for some, Christmas can be a stressful time. Expectations are high, particularly for the host, and when allergy triggers are added in to the mix, the festive season can be less than joyful. Enjoy the celebrations by following these top tips…

Reducing your stress levels and minimising potential allergy triggers can make a big difference to how you feel, not just over the festive season, but any time. Studies have shown that although allergies are not caused by stress, experiencing stress can sometimes worsen allergy symptoms.

Many people are allergic to mould and can be quite unaware of it. But when it’s cold and damp outdoors, and the heating is on indoors, those humid conditions are a perfect breeding ground for mould. Mould can cause a whole host of iriitating symptoms such as runny nose, sneezing, fatigue, anxiety and depression.

What about your tree? Real trees and wreaths are also a breeding ground for moulds. When leaves decay, the allergen levels increase. If you suffer, it isalways best to steer clear of seasonal greenery in the home. Be sure to store artificial trees and decorations in water-tight containers for the rest of the year, as these too can

And it goes without saying you must watch what you eat. If you have a known food allergy, it goes without saying that you should think about this before the big day, and make sure that arrangements can be made for for alternatives. Always check ingredients when eating at restaurants, getting takeaways, or anywhere you haven’t prepared the ingredients yourself.

For more information or to discuss your allergies or concerns contact us here


Eating Out This Christmas?

Around 70% of people with allergies avoid buying takeaways due to fears about allergens and a lack of trust in the information they are given, according to recent research released by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and Allergy UK.

More than half of those with allergies (53%) said they avoided eating in restaurants for the same reason.

Since 13th December 2014, Restaurants and takeaways will be required by law to tell customers if any of the top 14 allergen ingredients are present in the foods they serve.

These ingredients range from nuts and milk to less widely recognised allergens, including mustard and lupin seeds. Around 2 million people in the UK suffer from allergies including 2% of adults and 8% of children.

A survey, carried out by the Food Standards Agency, found that over half of their respondents did not feel confident in their knowledge of ingredients related to food allergies and intolerances.

On average 10 people die and around 5,000 are hospitalised per year in the UK due to allergic reactions.

This is a growing issue in the UK, with hospital admissions relating to allergies rising by 87% between 2002 and 2014.

However, the same study conducted by the FSA found that half of all UK adults have either limited or no knowledge at all about the ingredients that cause allergic reactions.

The legislation is a huge step forward for those with food allergies, who should now feel confident they have a right to ask about allergenic ingredients in the foods they buy.


Is Your Christmas Tree Making You Ill?

If you find yourself reaching tissues during the holiday season, you might find that the cold you think you have may not just be symptoms of a winter flu but actually could be a sign of “Christmas Tree Syndrome.”

There are now documented cases of people who have suffered allergic reactions to their Christmas trees and it has been found that certain molds that are prevalent in conifer trees can irritate people who suffer from those allergies.

These molds can significantly increase the risk of wheezing, persistent cough and allergic sensitization.

And, furthermore, the symptoms will only be exacerbated when the tree is inside a confined space like your home.

So how can you reduce Christmas-tree related allergies? Many Christmas Tree outlets will offer to spray the tree down with water before you collect it, or, you can also hose down the tree yourself and wait for it dry out before bringing it inside.

And finally, do stick to the 12 days of Christmas, then throw it out. This will limit your exposure to the tree and limit your health issues,


Food Allergen Legislation

On 13 December, new legislation (the EU Food Information for Consumers Regulation 1169/2011) will require food businesses to provide allergy information on food sold unpackaged, in for example catering outlets, deli counters, bakeries and sandwich bars.

There will also be changes to existing legislation on labelling allergenic ingredients in prepacked foods. Guidance has been developed to help businesses meet these new requirements and this page will continue to be updated as more support tools are made available. More information about the new European legislation can be found on the European Commission website

For more information please contact me here


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