PRESS-NEWS.org - Press Release Distribution
FREE PRESS RELEASES DISTRIBUTION

Asthma drug aids simultaneous desensitization to several food allergies, study finds

2014-02-28
(Press-News.org) STANFORD, Calif. — An asthma drug accelerates the process of desensitizing patients with food allergies to several foods at the same time, a new study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine and Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford shows.

The findings come on the heels of a recent study by the same team showing that people with multiple food allergies can be desensitized to several foods at once. The two studies, both phase-1 safety trials, provide the first scientific evidence that a promising new method for treating people for multiple food allergies works.

Patients who took the asthma drug omalizumab became desensitized to multiple food allergens at a median of 18 weeks; those who did not take the drug became desensitized at a median of 85 weeks, the researchers found. The results of the new study will be published online Feb. 27 in the journal Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology.

In oral immunotherapy, the desensitization method used in both studies, allergic patients build up tolerance to a food by ingesting it in tiny, gradually increasing doses under a doctor's supervision in a hospital setting. Over time, the body stops reacting, and the patient is able to eat the food safely. Several researchers have shown that this therapy works on a single food allergen, but it had not been tested on multiple food allergens. The Stanford team tried the new technique because nearly 4 million Americans are allergic to more than one food.

"Parents came up to me and said things like, 'It's great that you're desensitizing children to their peanut or milk allergies, but my daughter is allergic to wheat, cashews, eggs and almonds. What can you do about that?'" said Kari Nadeau, MD, PhD, associate professor of pediatrics at the medical school and an immunologist at Stanford Hospital & Clinics and Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford. Nadeau is the senior author of the new study.

Patients' options for dealing with food allergies are limited. Physicians advise them to avoid allergy triggers and carry injectable epinephrine at all times because they run a constant risk of anaphylactic shock from accidental consumption. On the other hand, oral immunotherapy is still experimental and quite slow: In prior studies, patients took as long as three years to become desensitized to one food. Being desensitized to several foods, one at a time, could prospectively take decades. Yet Stanford researchers succeeded in safely desensitizing patients to several food allergens at once and were able to speed up desensitization by supplementing oral immunotherapy with injections of omalizumab (brand name Xolair).

In the earlier study, in which patients were not given omalizumab, 25 children and adults with multiple allergies ate tiny doses of their allergens — as many as five — as highly purified food powders each day. The total dose was evenly divided between the allergens so that each subject got the same total quantity of food protein, regardless of the number of foods they were being desensitized to. The researchers monitored the treatment's safety, noting some mild allergic reactions, such as itching in the mouth, and a small number of severe reactions that were treated with epinephrine. The food dose was gradually increased until subjects could eat 4 grams of each food protein, or up to 20 grams of the allergenic food proteins in total, without experiencing a reaction. This occurred at a median of 85 weeks after food doses began.

In the second and most recent study, 25 children and adults with multiple food allergies underwent a similar protocol — but with an additional step. Eight weeks before being introduced to food allergens, the patients began receiving injections of omalizumab. This drug reduces activity of the body's IgE molecules, the antibodies involved in allergic responses, and had been shown in a previous Stanford study to speed the success of oral immunotherapy for children with milk allergies. Patients getting omalizumab tolerated larger initial doses of allergens than those in the non-omalizumab study, and desensitization progressed faster. (The drug was discontinued after eight weeks of oral immunotherapy; this discontinuation was not associated with additional allergic reactions.) The patients continued consuming food powders until they could safely eat 4 grams of each food protein. This occurred at a median of 18 weeks after the food doses began.

"It's efficient," said Philippe Bégin, MD, a visiting scientist at Stanford and the paper's lead author. "It's exciting that we could perhaps have a treatment that's actually doable on a large scale." However, the new experimental regimen will need further testing in randomized, blinded, controlled phase-2 studies before it is ready for widespread clinical use, he and Nadeau cautioned.

Many of the study subjects had more than five food allergies, the maximum number treated. However, the researchers saw something curious: Some people with nut allergies were desensitized to related tree nuts to which were also allergic but that were not included in their immunotherapy.

"We saw this 'bystander effect' in about 60 percent of patients, where, for example, we gave someone pecan powder and the person became desensitized to walnut, too," said Nadeau, who is also a member of the Children's Health Research Institute at Stanford. "In the future, we'll be trying to understand why some people have the bystander effect during clinical trials and some don't."

Future research will also determine the most effective way to conduct the therapy. Nadeau's team is now planning a phase-2 trial at Stanford and possibly four other research institutions across the country. Stanford has already begun recruiting subjects for that trial.

INFORMATION:

Other Stanford co-authors were Tina Dominguez, physician assistant; Shruti Wilson, MD, clinical instructor in immunology; Liane Bacal, MD, clinical instructor in immunology; Anjuli Mehrotra, MD, clinical instructor in immunology; Bethany Kausch, RN, nurse researcher; Anthony Trela, NP, research nurse coordinator; Morvarid Tavassoli, research assistant; Elisabeth Hoyte, NP, research nurse; Gerri O'Riordan, RN, chief operating officer and senior director of regulatory compliance for the Stanford Food Allergy Center; Alanna Blakemore, manufacturing research assistant; and Scott Seki, research assistant. They also collaborated with researchers at Johns Hopkins University.

Funding for this research was provided by Food Allergy Research and Education (for the phase-1 study without omalizumab) and the Fund for Food Allergy Research at Stanford (for both phase-1 studies). Bégin was supported by AllerGen NCE Inc. (the Allergy, Gene and Environment Network), a member of the Networks of Centres of Excellence of Canada.

The Stanford University School of Medicine consistently ranks among the nation's top medical schools, integrating research, medical education, patient care and community service. For more news about the school, please visit http://mednews.stanford.edu. The medical school is part of Stanford Medicine, which includes Stanford Hospital & Clinics and Lucile Packard Children's Hospital. For information about all three, please visit http://stanfordmedicine.org/about/news.html.

Stanford Children's Health, with Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford at its core, is an internationally recognized leader in world-class, nurturing care and extraordinary outcomes in every pediatric and obstetric specialty from the routine to rare, for every child and pregnant woman. Together with our Stanford Medicine physicians, nurses, and staff, we deliver this innovative care and research through partnerships, collaborations, outreach, specialty clinics and primary care practices at more than 100 locations in the U.S. western region. As a non-profit, we are committed to supporting our community – from caring for uninsured or underinsured kids, homeless teens and pregnant moms, to helping re-establish school nurse positions in local schools. Learn more about our full range of preeminent programs and network of care at stanfordchildrens.org, and on our Healthier, Happy Lives blog. Join us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford is the heart of Stanford Children's Health, and is one of the nation's top hospitals for the care of children and expectant mothers. We are the only children's hospital in Northern California with specialty programs ranked in the U.S. News & World Report Top 10 for 2013-14, and the only hospital in Northern California to receive the national 2013 Leapfrog Group Top Children's Hospital award for quality and patient care safety. Discover more at stanfordchildrens.org.

PRINT MEDIA CONTACT: Erin Digitale at (650) 724-9175 (digitale@stanford.edu)
BROADCAST MEDIA CONTACT: Winter Johnson at (650) 498-7056 (wijohnson@lpch.org)


ELSE PRESS RELEASES FROM THIS DATE:

Beneficial anti-inflammatory effects observed when plant extracts fed to sick pigs

2014-02-28
URBANA, Ill. – Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) is the most expensive and invasive disease for pig producers on a global scale. Though it is not occurring on every farm, it is the biggest disease problem in the pig industry, said a University of Illinois animal sciences researcher. E. coli has also been a problem historically and continues to be on an industry-wide basis, said James Pettigrew. "Either disease can sweep through a farm so their alleviation would substantially reduce production costs. Even though many management practices have been used ...

Waterloo physicists solve 20-year-old debate surrounding glassy surfaces

Waterloo physicists solve 20-year-old debate surrounding glassy surfaces
2014-02-28
University of Waterloo physicists have succeeded in measuring how the surfaces of glassy materials flow like a liquid, even when they should be solid. A series of simple and elegant experiments were the solution to a problem that has been plaguing condensed matter physicists for the past 20 years. Understanding the mobility of glassy surfaces has implications for the design and manufacture of thin-film coatings and also sets practical limits on how small we can make nanoscale devices and circuitry. The work is the culmination of a project carried out by a research ...

Burmese pythons pose little risk to people in Everglades

2014-02-28
EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK, Fla. -- The estimated tens of thousands of Burmese pythons now populating the Everglades present a low risk to people in the park, according to a new assessment by U.S. Geological Survey and National Park Service scientists. The human risk assessment looked at five incidents that involved humans and Burmese pythons over a 10-year period in Everglades National Park. All five incidents involved pythons striking at biologists who were conducting research in flooded wetlands. "Visitor and staff safety is always our highest priority at Everglades ...

Kessler Foundation researchers find education attenuates impact of TBI on cognition

Kessler Foundation researchers find education attenuates impact of TBI on cognition
2014-02-28
West Orange, NJ. February 28, 2014. Kessler Foundation researchers have found that higher educational attainment (a proxy of intellectual enrichment) attenuates the negative impact of traumatic brain injury (TBI) on cognitive status. The brief report, Sumowski J, Chiaravalloti N, Krch D, Paxton J, DeLuca J. Education attenuates the negative impact of traumatic brain injury (TBI) on cognitive status, was published in the December issue of Archives of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Vol. 94, Issue 12:2562-64. Cognitive outcomes vary post-TBI, even among individuals ...

American Journal of Transplantation reports REGiMMUNE's transplant tolerance results

2014-02-28
Tokyo, Japan – February 28, 2014 – REGiMMUNE Corporation announced that the American Journal of Transplantation (AJT) has published its paper that describes a novel approach to long-term tolerance in organ transplantation with continuous administration of immune suppressants. "A Novel Approach Inducing Transplant Tolerance by Activated Invariant Natural Killer T Cells with Costimulatory Blockade" was published in the AJT March 2014 Issue 3, Volume 14, pages 554-567, and was first made available online as an early view on February 6, 2014. Robust, lifelong, donor-specific ...

Study: Racial bias in pain perception appears among children as young as 7

2014-02-28
A new University of Virginia psychology study has found that a sample of mostly white American children – as young as 7, and particularly by age 10 – report that black children feel less pain than white children. The study, which builds on previous research on bias among adults involving pain perception, is published in the Feb. 28 issue of the British Journal of Developmental Psychology. "Our research shows that a potentially very harmful bias in adults emerges during middle childhood, and appears to develop across childhood," said the study's lead investigator, Rebecca ...

BNI study reveal unexpected findings

2014-02-28
(Phoenix , Ariz. Feb 28, 2014) -- "The results of this study are counter to most expectations," said Dr. Brachman, Director of Radiation Oncology at Barrow and St. Joseph's. "Bevacizuman had been shown in earlier studies to be an effective drug in the treatment of patients with recurrent disease. But, on newly diagnosed patients, it did not, in fact, prolong survival." The randomized, double-blind placebo controlled trial of 621 adults was funded by the National Cancer Institute and the drug manufacturer Genentech from 2009 to2012. Glioblastoma is the most common primary ...

Northern Sumatra dealing with smoke from fires

Northern Sumatra dealing with smoke from fires
2014-02-28
On February 27, 2014, the Wall Street Journal and Southeast Asia Realtime reported that: "the plantation-rich province of Riau on Indonesia's Sumatra Island has declared a state of emergency as fires set for land clearing have sent pollution levels soaring and smoke made breathing difficult for thousands." Tens of thousands of Riau residents are suffering from the effects of the smoke coming from dozens of fires set to clear land in Sumatra. Riau is the center of Indonesia's more than $20 billion palm oil industry—the world's largest. Fires occur with frequency in Riau ...

Food production in the northeastern US may need to change if climate does

2014-02-28
BOSTON (February 28, 2014) — If significant climate change occurs in the United States it may be necessary to change where certain foods are produced in order to meet consumer demand. In a paper published online this week in the journal Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems, researchers at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University provide an overview of current farmland use and food production in the Northeastern U.S., identifying potential vulnerabilities of the 12-state region*. Led by Tim Griffin, Ph.D., associate professor and director ...

Psychiatric nursing specialists played key role in response to Boston Marathon bombing

2014-02-28
Philadelphia, Pa. (February 28, 2014) – Psychiatric advanced practice nurses (APNs) played a critical role in supporting psychological recovery after the Boston Marathon bombing—not only for injured patients, but also for family members and hospital staff, according to an article in Clinical Nurse Specialist, official journal of the the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health. Barbara Lakatos, DNP, PMHCNS-BC, and colleagues of the Psychiatric Nursing Resource Service ...

LAST 30 PRESS RELEASES:

Scientists model 'true prevalence' of COVID-19 throughout pandemic

New breakthrough to help immune systems in the fight against cancer

Through the thin-film glass, researchers spot a new liquid phase

Administering opioids to pregnant mice alters behavior and gene expression in offspring

Brain's 'memory center' needed to recognize image sequences but not single sights

Safety of second dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines after first-dose allergic reactions

Changes in disparities in access to care, health after Medicare eligibility

Use of high-risk medications among lonely older adults

65+ and lonely? Don't talk to your doctor about another prescription

Exosome formulation developed to deliver antibodies for choroidal neovascularization therapy

Second COVID-19 mRNA vaccine dose found safe following allergic reactions to first dose

Plant root-associated bacteria preferentially colonize their native host-plant roots

Rare inherited variants in previously unsuspected genes may confer significant risk for autism

International experts call for a unified public health response to NAFLD and NASH epidemic

International collaboration of scientists rewrite the rulebook of flowering plant genetics

Improving air quality reduces dementia risk, multiple studies suggest

Misplaced trust: When trust in science fosters pseudoscience

Two types of blood pressure meds prevent heart events equally, but side effects differ

New statement provides path to include ethnicity, ancestry, race in genomic research

Among effective antihypertensive drugs, less popular choice is slightly safer

Juicy past of favorite Okinawan fruit revealed

Anticipate a resurgence of respiratory viruses in young children

Anxiety, depression, burnout rising as college students prepare to return to campus

Goal-setting and positive parent-child relationships reduce risk of youth vaping

New research identifies cancer types with little survival improvements in adolescents and young adul

Oncotarget: Replication-stress sensitivity in breast cancer cells

Oncotarget: TERT and its binding protein: overexpression of GABPA/B in gliomas

Development of a novel technology to check body temperature with smartphone camera

The mechanics of puncture finally explained

Extreme heat, dry summers main cause of tree death in Colorado's subalpine forests

[Press-News.org] Asthma drug aids simultaneous desensitization to several food allergies, study finds