October 2006 Archives

evolutecLONDON (AFX) - Evolutec Group plc, a biopharmaceutical company developing products for the treatment of allergic, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, said its hay fever drug candidate rEV131 has demonstrated an additional mechanism that may give it anti-inflammatory properties.

It said rEV131, currently in Phase IIb trial, has an equivalent impact to an experimental small molecule H4 receptor blocker which may explain its anti-inflammatory effects, such as the significant reduction in nasal congestion observed, in previous clinical trials in asthma.

'We believe that rEV131 has the potential to fill the unmet need in allergic rhinitis for a new product which has a fast onset and reduces all symptoms,' it said.

Evolutec also said it is on schedule to deliver the results of its North American 300-patient Phase IIb hay fever trial by the year-end.

source

Half of Asthma Patients Use Complementary Therapies

|
A significant number of patients use vitamin and mineral supplements, herbal remedies, and drink coffee and tea for relief of asthma and rhinitis symptoms. These practices could cause additional health problems and may even have life-threatening adverse effects, researchers warned here at CHEST 2006, the 72nd annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians.

Paul D. Blanc, MD, FCCP, and colleagues at the University of California at San Francisco conducted interviews with 375 patients with asthma and/or rhinitis at baseline and again 2 years later. Dr. Blanc said that 15% of patients had asthma without rhinitis, 70% had asthma with rhinitis, and 56% had rhinitis alone.

The investigators prospectively compared physical health status and the use of complementary and alternative medicines for alleviation of symptoms.

Here's food for thought about allergies

|
food allergyIf some foods leave you feeling itchy and scratchy, queasy or sneezy, you're not alone. Millions of adults and children suffer from food allergies or intolerances.

The most common allergens affecting children are milk, eggs, peanuts, wheat, soy and tree nuts such as walnuts and pecans. In adults, the most common are peanuts, tree nuts, fish and shellfish. Allergic reactions, such as hives, swelling of the throat and shortness of breath, result when the body's immune system sees food as an invader and produces an antibody against it. Children are more susceptible because their digestive systems are undeveloped and their immune systems are more often exposed to food proteins, says Andy Nish, an allergist. The exposure decreases as their bodies mature.

Children tend to outgrow allergies to milk, egg and soy, but once you develop a true food allergy as an adult, you are unlikely to outgrow it, Nish says. In addition, an allergy to peanuts and tree nuts is seldom outgrown, he says.

Enzyme involved in allergic diseases found

|

allergic reactionRICHMOND, Va., Oct. 30 (UPI) -- A U.S. research team says it has identified an enzyme involved in allergic reactions, possibly providing a new target for the treatment of such maladies.

The scientists from Virginia Commonwealth University, the Hospital for Special Surgery and Weill Cornell Medical College in New York note allergic diseases such as asthma and hay fever afflict about 30 percent of people in the developed world -- and allergic reactions are the sixth leading cause of chronic disease in the United States.

medical researchA research team has identified a key enzyme responsible for triggering a chain of events that results in allergic reaction, according to new study findings published online this week in Nature Immunology.

The work by researchers from Virginia Commonwealth University, the Hospital for Special Surgery and Weill Cornell Medical College in New York sets the stage for development of new strategies and target therapies that control allergic disease – the sixth leading cause of chronic disease in the United States.

Allergic diseases such as asthma and hay fever are problematic for about 30 percent of the population in the developed world. Researchers have developed various treatments to control allergy, but no cure has been found.

newbornsSINGAPORE: Cow's milk allergy is one of the most common childhood allergies but it is often misdiagnosed, say doctors.

It is believed that 3.5% of all children who have severe reactions to food are allergic to cow's milk.

Angry rashes plagued Charlotte Lum from the time she was just five weeks old.

Doctors she went to told her parents it was eczema.

The girl continued to suffer till she was three.
YogaAsthma is an ancient Greek word that means "panting, gasping or short-drawn breath." It is one of the most discomforting of respiratory ailments, known to affect around 5% of the world’s adult population and 10% of children.

Tests carried out at Yoga Therapy Centers across the world have shown remarkable results in managing asthma. In some cases it has also been found that asthma attacks can actually be averted, without the aid of drugs, just through yoga practices.

Since Yoga believes that the mind is central to a diseased condition, pacifying and placating it would, in itself, help cure asthma to a great extent. The practice of yogasanas, yogic kriyas, pranayamas, relaxation and meditation calm down the whole system. This, in turn, facilitates proper assimilation of food and strengthens the lungs, digestive and circulatory system. Over a period of time, that checks asthma attacks and even cures the asthma condition.
SALT LAKE CITY, UT -- October 27, 2006 -- Teamwork between a hospital asthma clinic and a legal assistance project resulted in asthma patients improving their health status by getting their homes' environments repaired.

"Our asthma patients were amazingly compliant in taking their medication, but they weren't getting any better," said Mary O'Sullivan, MD, pulmonary specialist and chief, asthma clinic, St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital, New York, New York. "They were living in roach-infested, rodent -infested, moldy, dusty apartments."

Attempts to get landlords to clean up the patients' homes had no results -- until the hospital partnered with a legal assistance firm, Dr. O'Sullivan said in a presentation on October 23rd at CHEST 2006, the 72nd annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians.

Aspirin and Decreased Adult-Onset Asthma

|

RATIONALE: In an observational cohort study, women who self-selected for frequent aspirin use developed less newly diagnosed asthma than women who did not take aspirin.

OBJECTIVE: To explore whether low-dose aspirin decreased the risk of newly diagnosed asthma in a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

METHODS: The Physicians' Health Study randomized 22,071 apparently healthy male physicians, age 40-84 years at baseline and tolerant of aspirin over an 18-week run-in period, to 325mg aspirin or placebo on alternate days. The aspirin component was terminated after 4.9 years due principally to the emergence of a statistically extreme 44% reduction in risk of first myocardial infarction among those randomly assigned to aspirin.

The rise of an allergy nation

|

AUSTRALIA - Taped to the wall of a child-care centre in inner-city Sydney is a four-page spreadsheet of children's allergies.

One little girl brings her own water and one little boy can drink only soy milk. There are three vegetarians and a handful of gluten-frees. One poor soul can't eat honey, strawberries, peanuts, eggs or sesame products.

It's a compelling snapshot of our itchy, scratchy nation, in which about 40 per cent of Australians have an allergic disease, including asthma, eczema, food allergies, and hay fever.

Tanox initiates early stage trial of asthma treatment

|

Tanox has begun dosing a phase I clinical trial of TNX-650, an antibody being evaluated as a potential treatment for moderate to severe asthma.

TNX-650 has a mechanism of action unique from currently available asthma treatments and has the potential to be a therapeutic option for patients whose disease is not currently well controlled and for non-allergic asthmatics.

TNX-650 targets Interleukin 13 (IL-13). Preclinical studies indicate that IL-13 is a key mediator of asthma responses, including airway inflammation, obstruction and hyper-reactivity.

Approximately 50 percent of infants and preschoolers receiving medical treatment for allergies display preliminary symptoms of asthma, making them at high risk of developing the respiratory condition later in life, according to the results of a survey released yesterday.

The survey was conducted by Chang-Gung Memorial Children's Hospital on children up to five years of age who made recent outpatient visits to the hospital for allergies or asthma.

The survey found 30 percent of these patients had persistent asthma, while another 50 percent had preliminary symptoms of the respiratory condition -- such as frequent coughing and wheezing.

It's rare that you hear of someone dying from food allergies, but when it happens, it usually reaches national news. Why? Because food is something we eat every day - several times a day - and everyone should be aware of the dangers of food allergies. Some foods such as peanuts contain very strong allergens that are in the food and released into the air as well. That's why someone with severe food allergies must be extremely careful where and how they dine out.

Food Allergy Deaths

There are approximately 150 deaths related to food allergies in the United States each year. Food allergies are responsible for more deaths than insect bites as well as reactions to medicines.

Pharmac under fire again over asthma inhaler

|
 Controversial medicine inhaler Salamol has been linked with deteriorating control of asthma in a study that has unleashed fresh criticism of Pharmac. Last year Pharmac planned to subsidise only one metered-dose salbutamol inhaler, Salamol, which would have forced more than 500,000 patients who used the Ventolin brand to switch or pay its full price. After more than 700 complaints that Salamol was ineffective, tasted bad or that its spray got blocked, Pharmac backed down and kept subsidies on both - temporarily.

Health Tip: If You're Allergic to Shellfish

|

If you are allergic to shellfish, you can end up in the hospital if you eat something with a protein found in shellfish.

So be sure to check the ingredient label of anything you eat. Here is a list of ingredients to avoid, courtesy of the Barnes-Jewish Hospital:

  • Crab, crawfish, crayfish, ecrevisse.
  • Any type of clam, including cherrystone, littleneck, pismo and quahog.
  • Abalone.
  • Lobster, langouste or langoustine, scampi, coral or tomalley.
  • Mussels, oyster, scallops or any kind of mollusk.
  • Shrimp, prawns or crevette.
  • Cockle, periwinkle or sea urchin.

source

An Asthma UK census has revealed that only 4% of those people questioned have their asthma under control.

The shocking results follow Asthma UK's first ever asthma control census which was launched on World Asthma Day in May this year. It aimed to raise awareness amongst the 4.1 million adults with asthma in the UK that they may be putting up with symptoms that impact unnecessarily on their quality of life.

The Asthma Control Test, a 60-second, five-point questionnaire was completed online by over 16,000 people. The test which gives a score out of 25, helps to identify the level of asthma control.

An intervention program of telephone follow-up of asthma patients seen at an inner-city hospital reduces frequency of emergency department (ED) use and results in better healthcare management and ultimately better asthma control.

The findings were presented here yesterday at CHEST 2006, the 72nd annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians.

The hospital in question was the Truman Medical Center–Hospital Hill in Kansas City, Missouri. Principal investigator Rita A. Mangold, RN, Asthma Program Coordinator at the hospital, went to some pains to convince session attendees that her Midwest institution is truly situated in an inner-city environment. "Eleven percent of this inner-city population is living below the poverty line," she pointed out. "The population is also woefully devoid of payer sources. About 39% are fee-for-service patients."

Altana: allergy drug faces obstacles despite approval

|

Altana's nasal steroid spray Omnaris has been approved in the US for allergic rhinitis.

Altana's Omnaris, an intranasal corticosteroid based on ciclesonide, has been approved in the US for the treatment of seasonal and perennial allergic rhinitis in patients 12 years of age and older. However, given the major products already on the market and the recent patent expiry of Flonase, Omnaris is likely to have a limited impact on the field of allergic rhinitis treatment.

'Content Allergic rhinitis (AR) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the nasal mucosa causing sneezing, itching, nasal congestion, and discharge. Seasonal allergic rhinitis is better known as hay fever, while perennial allergic rhinitis is a chronic condition caused by triggers such as pet dander and dust. According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, more than 40 million Americans are currently estimated to suffer with allergic diseases.

Sesame Seed Allergy Alert

|
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is warning people with allergies to sesame seeds not to consume ENER-G brand Wylde Pretzels because the affected products may contain sesame seeds which is not declared on the label.
All "Best if used by" codes up to and including 5 1 2007 (i.e., May 1, 2007) of the following products made in the USA are affected by this alert:

1) ENER-G brand Wylde Pretzels sold in a 227 g package bearing UPC 0 75119 64725 5.
2) ENER-G brand Wylde Pretzels sold in a 113 g package bearing UPC 0 75119 64715 6.

Contact Allergen of the Year: p-Phenylenediamine

|

by Vincent A. DeLeo, Medscape, 24 Oct 2006

p-Phenylenediamine, the allergen of the year? Why now?

Granted, p-phenylenediamine (PPD) has been the leading permanent hair coloring agent or oxidative hair dye in most of the Western world since its introduction in the 1880s,[1] and it has been a problematic agent almost since its debut. Because of its allergic potential, it was banned in France and Germany from 1906 until the 1980s to 1990s, when it was again allowed for use in member states of the European Union.

So why now?

Children most at risk for hidden food allergies

|

AllergyMILWAUKEE - When Colleen Pfaff was a toddler, her father forgot to wash his hands after handling blue cheese for a salad, and lifted Colleen into the tub to give her a bath.

Hand-shaped welts immediately appeared on Colleen’s body. Her immune system had reacted to milk protein still on his hands.

The welts subsided after washing with soap and water. But it was a painful lesson in how little it can take to trigger an allergic reaction to food.

Analysis: An asthma patient's best friend?

|

Allergyby Ed Susman, UPI

SALT LAKE CITY, Oct. 24 (UPI) -- Inner-city asthma patients whose medicine doesn't help because they live in rundown housing may be better offer getting referred to a lawyer rather than a specialist.

In New York City, when doctors asked a lawyer to confront recalcitrant landlords, the patients got their homes repaired -- and used less medicine, required fewer trips to the emergency room or treatment, and in general, improved their overall condition.

Destroying Airway Muscle With Heat Eases Asthma Symptoms

|

AllergyAsthma symptoms can be controlled by using heat to destroy smooth muscle tissue in the large airways, a researcher reported here.

The experimental technique, dubbed bronchial thermoplasty, is also safe and well-tolerated, although the treatment caused transient worsening of asthma symptoms, according to Michel Laviolette, M.D., of Laval University in Québec City, Quebec.

The technique uses a bronchoscopic catheter with an expandable, computer-controlled heating element on the end. The catheter is inserted into airways greater than three mm in diameter that branch off the mainstem bronchi, with the exception of the right middle lobe, Dr. Laviolette said at CHEST 2006, the meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians.

Improper Home Nebulizer Use Boosts Asthma Risk

|

TUESDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Devices called home nebulizers have been a boon to asthma care. But a new study shows that, if used improperly, they can also lead to serious asthma complications, even death.

These machines turn medications into fine, inhaled droplets. But researchers at Michigan State University concluded that when home nebulizers aren't used according to the National Asthma Education and Prevention Program (NAEPP) guidelines, they may actually contribute to some people's deaths.

"Widespread prescription and use of home nebulizers in asthma may have the unintended consequence of contributing to over-reliance on bronchodilators and inadequate use of inhaled steroids," the authors concluded.

Sunlight may protect against asthma

|

Interesting article in Australian press.

Preliminary results show that if the animals had a 15-30 minute dose of light before being exposed to a common allergen their chance of developing symptoms was "significantly reduced".

It has been already found that sun light is a vital contributor to healthy immune system. Time will show when light and therapy will get proper attention from scientists and consumers.

Food allergy and celiac guide to dining out

|

CHICAGO, Oct. 23 (UPI) -- A "Multi-Lingual Phrase Passport" is part of the U.S. "Let's Eat Out! Your Passport to Living Gluten and Allergy Free" guide for those with food allergies.

The pocket-sized guide empowers travelers with food allergies, such as celiac -- an auto-immune disorder reflected in a permanent intolerance to gluten, the protein found in wheat, rye and barley -- and those following specialized diets to safely eat outside the home.

Milk Allergy Alert, Products Recalled

|

Emerald Coast consumers are cautioned to a product recall due to undeclared dairy ingredients in certain rice and pasta side-dish mixes.

Unilever of Englewood Cliffs, the New Jersey producer of Knorr®-Lipton® "Sides", has issued a voluntary recall on several of its paste and rice products because of an allergy alert on undeclared milk in certain mixes after two reports of consumers experiencing adverse reactions.

The products, all of which were manufactured in one facility, are listed below:

LONDON (Reuters) - The General Medical Council (GMC) launched a national poster campaign on Monday to alert the public about new guidelines for doctors that encourage them to work more closely with patients.

After a two-year consultation with doctors, patients and the public the medical watchdog has updated its "Good Medical Practice" guide on professional standards with a major focus on doctors' duty to work in partnership with patients.

The GMC said this included their responsibility to advise patients about the link between health and lifestyle choices.

Once again I came across the opinion that germs-free environment is actually bad for children.

This topic was touched by the creators of website about vaccination hoax. You can read more here.

"Early exposure is needed to stimulate the immune system"
"The best means of preventing an allergy is mother's milk"

The original article is below

Herbal remedies may give relief from allergies

|

It was a very promising article, until I read till the end and saw

Save $84.50 a year off our newsstand price: Subscribe today for only 38 cents a day!

This has almost put me off a little, and I had to re-read the article. What's wrong with people who are actually writing something worth reading? Why there always has to be something distracting and repulsing?

Anyways, I invite you to read the article about the herbal treatment which can help you to fight your allergy.

Sun allergy drug set for phase II US trials

|

Sun Pharma Advanced Research Company (Sparc), the recently demerged research entity of domestic pharma major Sun Pharmaceutical, is all set to take its lead molecule for anti-allergic treatment to the phase-II trials (trials on patient) in the US.

The investigational new drug (IND) of Sparc has already received permission from the US Food and Drug Administration to enter the phase-II trials.

The phase-II trials will be conducted in the US directly by the company, using a leading local CRO (clinical research organisation). This will mark the first IND filing and phase-II studies in the US by an Indian company working independently, that’s without a partner.

Labor backs allergy training plan

|

LIFE saving allergy training would be mandatory for teachers and childcare workers if Labor wins next month's Victorian election.

Premier Steve Bracks today announced the Government would spend $2.1 million over five years to train childcare workers and teachers how to treat children with life-threatening anaphylaxis - a severe allergic reaction.

The package would include training to reduce the risk of exposure to anaphylactic triggers - such as peanuts and shellfish - and how to administer a life-saving shot of adrenaline through an Epi-pen.

Virginia Commonwealth University researchers have identified how a bioactive molecule involved with allergy, inflammation and cancer is transported out of mast cells, according to findings published online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Mast cells are specialized cells that react to allergy-causing agents by releasing substances that trigger the body's allergic response, leading to conditions like asthma and hives. Among the molecules released by mast cells that participate in the allergic response is sphingosine-1-phosphate. This molecule is also implicated in cancer.

Hospitals clean out allergy, asthma triggers

|

by Jon Brodkin, Daily News, 22 Oct 2006

It's no surprise a severe asthma attack can force someone to go to the hospital. It might surprise some to learn chemicals and substances commonly found inside hospitals can cause asthma or trigger asthma attacks.

Cleaning products, latex gloves, pesticides, dust, mold and even some medications can cause or exacerbate asthma, according to a report issued Wednesday by Health Care Without Harm, an international coalition of 450 groups trying to make the health care industry safer.

"Ironically, many products that are used in hospitals to keep patients, visitors and personnel safe from pathogens represent some of the very same products that have some potential to cause or exacerbate asthma in susceptible individuals," the report states.

Falling Leaves Mean Rising Allergies

|

SATURDAY, Oct. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Raking and burning autumn leaves is a rite of the season for many, but those with allergies may want to avoid it, experts say.

Here are some other tips from the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI) on avoiding allergy triggers this fall:

Depression tied to poor asthma therapy adherence

|

by Megan Rauscher, Reuters, 20 Oct 2006

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Depressive symptoms are common among inner-city adults hospitalized for asthma flare-ups, according to a new study in the medical journal Chest.

Furthermore, such symptoms identify individuals who are unlikely to stick to their asthma medication regimen when they go home.

"Typically, when someone comes into the hospital and we treat their asthma, we don't necessarily look at whether they are depressed," Dr. Susan J. Bartlett commented. "But maybe we need to, because these individuals are really at very high risk of being poorly adherent to their asthma therapy once they get out of the hospital."

New treatment may mean no meds for some asthma patients

|

bout 20 million Americans are living with asthma and about 5000 die from it every year.

Now a new treatment for people with severe forms of the disease could save lives.

Most asthmatics take a variety of medications and now researchers are hoping a new procedure, called bronchial thermoplasty, will help patients get rid of some of their meds and live healthier lives.

State office workers to be moved soon

|

BENNINGTON — Plans to move state office workers from the Veterans Drive complex starting next week are moving forward.

Weekly memos have been issued to keep workers up to date.

"The Health Department will provide guidance about what can be moved (papers and other fibrous materials) in advance of the move," according to the memo.

No evidence soy formulas cut allergy risk

|

SYDNEY, Oct. 20 (UPI) -- Australian researchers find that although soy infant formulas are used to avoid food allergies, there is no proof that soy formulas cut allergy risk.

"There is no evidence that using any type of formula is better than exclusive breastfeeding for prevention of allergy," said study authors Dr. David Osborn of Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and Dr. John Sinn of Westmead Hospital.

"Specialized formulas should be restricted to situations where infants cannot exclusively breastfeed or when an infant develops a specific food allergy or hypersensitivity."

Despite health, Hoover senior keeps running

|

I find this article very inspiring. And not only for those who have asthma. Jackie Delamater can be a role model for every person who is sick.

When Delamater crossed the line at the Strongsville Invitational in 19:58.85, it meant more than just a new personal record.

It meant beating asthma after a four-year struggle. It meant casting aside a month of doubt and worry caused by health problems. It meant overcoming childhood anxieties.

I invite you to read this long but very interesting story.

Following the success of the highly successful direct response television campaign earlier this year, Asthma UK; the only charity dedicated to improving the health and well-being of people with asthma, has appointed multi-channel communication specialist, Broadsystem for its second Asthma Attack Card awareness campaign.

This is the second peak-time terrestrial TV campaign Asthma UK has undertaken in order to highlight the number of asthma-related deaths in the UK and encourage children, parents and teachers to carry an Asthma Attack Card. The card provides basic information on how to recognise an asthma attack and what steps to take if someone has one. People with asthma can indicate on the card what their commonest signs of an attack are, and add important contact details.

Asthma cases on the rise

|

The number of Californians suffering from asthma and asthma-like symptoms has spiked in the past three years, with Mother Lode counties seeing the most dramatic increase, a new study shows.

Those suffering from asthma or symptoms of asthma has jumped from 4 million, 12 percent of all Californians, in 2001 to 4.5 million, 13 percent, in 2003, according to the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research report.

The national average of people diagnosed with asthma is 10 percent.

"Asthma All Stars" Asthma Fair Kicks off at Kohl's

|

Lexington, Ky. (Oct. 19, 2006) – Today "Asthma All-Stars" promoted asthma awareness among students at the asthma fair held on behalf of UK HealthCare's Kentucky Children's Hospital and Kohl's Department Stores. The fair kicked off the Kentucky Children's Hospital Asthma Program which will be in Fayette County schools as well as in surrounding regions of Kentucky.

Kohl's Department Stores' Kohl's Cares for Kids® made a donation of $60,093 today to Dr. Tim Bricker, professor and chair, department of pediatrics, University of Kentucky College of Medicine, and physician-in-chief of Kentucky Children's Hospital. The donation will support funding for an asthma program to benefit children in Fayette, Jessamine and Rockcastle counties in Kentucky.

Hospital Chemicals Can Trigger Asthma

|

BOSTON -- Down every hallway in every hospital, there are doctors, nurses and patients. But it is what people can't see that could be a hazard to their health.

NewsCenter 5's Heather Unruh reported that Health Care Without Harm released a report on Wednesday that said people are getting sick from chemicals found in hospitals. In some cases, the report said, the chemicals are causing asthma or making asthma symptoms worse.

Earlier Solid Foods for Children - Safe or Not?

|

AllergyI found two articles who contradict each other.

One is saying:

"Giving solid food to infants less than six months old is not advisable as it may lead to the risk of food allergies later and new moms should rather breastfeed them exclusively, scientists say.

Solid foods of all types should be avoided for the first six months, and certain items like cow's milk, eggs, fish, and nuts should not be introduced until even later, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI)."

And another claims that

feeding the babies on cereals in the earlier part may be helpful to overcome the food allergies.

Read more and decide for yourself..

Lung Function at Birth May Predict Asthma Risk

|

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 18 (HealthDay News) -- The way a healthy infant's lungs function at birth may provide clues to that child's future respiratory health, concludes a new study from Norway.

The study found that babies who performed poorly on lung function tests at birth were more likely to develop asthma before the age of 10.

"The study tells us that some children who later have asthma, breathe abnormally already at birth," said one of the study's authors, Dr. Geir Haland, a research fellow and assistant consultant at Ulleval University Hospital in Oslo. "Thus we may infer from this that the disease process of asthma may express itself through lung function [tests a] long time before symptoms appear and that, in some children, it may appear that the disease process is established already before birth."

Transport mechanism of bioactive molecule, S1P, identified

|

What is causing the allergy? Different allergies have different triggers. Recently scientists from Virginia Commonwealth University have found a possible cause.

Mast cells are specialized cells that react to allergy-causing agents by releasing substances that trigger the body's allergic response, leading to conditions like asthma and hives. Among the molecules released by mast cells that participate in the allergic response is sphingosine-1-phosphate. This molecule is also implicated in cancer.

Hood Orders Recall Of Some Apple Juice Products

|

HP Hood began recalling some of its apple juice on Tuesday.

Company officials said the juice is being recalled because it may contain milk, which could cause an allergic reaction for people sensitive to dairy.

The recall affects plastic half gallon and pint containers of Hood 100% Apple Juice with the date Nov. 14 and a plant code of 2508 printed on it.

Allergy study skips shots and goes for the tongue

|

Finally some good news on Allergy treatment. Sublingual Immunotherapy instead of shots. No more skin penetrating and direct injections into the blood. The allergen will go via "normal" way, i.e. the immune system will get proper warning and will act accordingly

"I have to remember to take it every morning," Mrs. Pilarski said. "Other than that, it's very convenient."

Ok, I understand that there's a price to pay for the safe medicine - a need to remember to take it. However, I think it's not that hard.

Anyways, I think this is a great start.

Read more below

Coeliac sufferers have greater TB risk

|

LONDON, Oct 17 (Reuters) - People who suffer from coeliac disease have an increased risk of developing tuberculosis, according to research published on Tuesday.

Coeliac disease (CD) is an illness caused by an intolerance to a protein found in wheat, rye and barley.

Swedish scientists who studied hospital discharge records from 1964 to 2003 found that patients diagnosed with coeliac disease were more likely to suffer from tuberculosis (TB).

Kefir ingredients could help food allergies

|

By Stephen Daniells, 16 Oct 2006

Drinking the probiotic, fermented milk, kefir, decreased the allergic response to ovalbumin (egg white) in mice, and may offer hope to preventing food allergies, suggests a new study from Taiwan.

"Consumption of milk kefir and soymilk kefir suppressed [immune] response and altered the intestinal microflora in our supplemented group," wrote lead author Je-Ruei Liu from the National Taiwan University.

"Milk kefir and soymilk kefir may be considered among the more promising food components in terms of preventing food allergy and enhancement of mucosal resistance to gastrointestinal pathogen infection."

- asks Tony from new York, NY.

The humble carrot, familiar fare for Bugs Bunny and armies of school children, can be a dangerous, even lethal, snack for a small number of people. Heating the carrot, however, can render them harmless to the allergic, according to a recent study.

But how could a little heat turn a vegetable from deadly to delectable? And how can a wholesome carrot be dangerous in the first place?

Taking a walk could benefit asthma research, programs

|

Tawnya Shipley has a good reason to spread the word about asthma.

Her 8-year-old son, Trystan Herzog, narrowly escaped brain damage five years ago when he had his first attack of what became chronic asthma.

The family was living on an Air Force base in Japan at the time. On a trip to the grocery store, a friend who was helping Shipley buckle her son into his car seat noticed that the 3-year-old's breathing had become shallow, and he looked pale and tired.

Cats nip allergies in bud

|

Allergy-free CatsTo continue previously published news about allergy-free cats.

A California company is busy breeding seemingly magical kitties that won’t make you tear up, ending the misery for allergic cat lovers everywhere but hitting them hard in the pocketbook.

The fancy felines, called “lifestyle pets,” cost $4,000 and are selectively bred because they lack a protein in their saliva that in most cats produces the allergens that give people so much grief.

“We look to provide really special animals for people who have been deprived,” said Steven May, spokesman for Allerca, the San Diego company that is taking applications for the hypoallergenic kitties, including several from Boston customers.

By Diane Haag, 12 Oct 2006

In the whirlwind of activities that makes up the life of a 4-year-old boy, something flashes on Luke Babin's arm.

A medical alert bracelet proclaims that he's a little different from other boys who play soccer and watch Curious George.

"I'm allergic to dairy," Luke explains.

Luke is one of about 12 million Americans who suffer from some food allergy, and the numbers are growing.

By Shahina Maqbool, 13 Oct 2006

ISLAMABAD: Unpredictable weather changes, respiratory viral infections, and unprecedented heat and humidity in August and September increased the misery of respiratory allergy and asthma patients throughout Punjab and parts of NWFP.

The management of their illness becomes a challenge in Ramazan for many allergy and asthma patients as the holy month is associated with a significant change in daily routine patterns. Many believers visit mosques more frequently during Ramazan than any other time of the year. They expose themselves to dust from carpets, and many experience difficulty in breathing during 'sajda' (kneeling).

MINNEAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--General Mills is voluntarily recalling 13-ounce boxes of Golden Grahams cereal produced on certain dates because of a product labeling issue. The product produced on the dates being recalled may contain milk, a potential allergen, though “milk” is not listed as an ingredient.

There has been one report of an allergic reaction associated with this product.

Consumers allergic to milk or milk products, or who are unsure of whether they are allergic to milk or milk products, should not consume product bearing the affected code dates and should contact General Mills for a full refund.

Tablet that could cure hay fever

|

Hayfever: Blights the lives of one in four Britons each summerA daily tablet that could cure hay fever will be available within months.

The pills, which dissolve under the tongue, dramatically reduce the symptoms of the allergy which blights the lives of one in four Britons each summer.

Manufacturer, Danish drug firm ALK-Abello, believes its Grazax tablets, which can be taken at home, will even cure some sufferers.

The prescription-only pills, which are based on grass pollen, have recently been licensed for use and are expected to be on sale in the UK within three months.

Popped under the tongue once a day during the summer, they are the first tablets to tackle the underlying course of hay fever, rather than merely treat the symptoms.

Overactivation of two receptors for histamine, normally associated with common allergies and acid reflux, may explain why some people, including highly trained athletes, pass out soon after heightened physical activities, according to researchers at the University of Oregon.

A series of studies led researchers in incremental steps to the discovery that the use of two commonly used antihistamines (fexofenadine and ranitidine) prior to exercise dramatically lower or completely eliminate low blood pressure following exertion. The drugs worked by preventing post-exercise hyperemia, an increased flow of blood, in the skeletal muscle during the critical 90-minute recovery period after exercise. In all, the pre-exercise consumption of the two antihistamines reduced the blood flow that occurs during recovery by 80 percent.

High-efficiency air filtration equipment 100 times more efficient than standard paper filters can be added to existing central air conditioning and heating systems to remove 99.98 percent of airborne allergens.

Southlake, TX (PRWEB) October 13, 2006 -- Autumn brings crisp days and cool evenings to North Texas, a welcome change from the grueling heat of a sizzling summer. It also brings a few things not so welcome – runny noses, watery eyes, itchy throats, sneezing and congestion that are classic symptoms of seasonal allergies.

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) again has named the Dallas/Fort Worth area one of the 10 worst places in the United States for fall allergies, which dulls the fall luster for many North Texas residents.

Seasonal Allergy Alert

|

NBC -- Changing leaves and cooler temperatures aren't the only signs that Autumn is here! For many people, itchy eyes and runny noses mark the beginning of Fall.

But if you depend on a drug store remedy to ease your allergy suffering, you may want to take a second look at the label.

For millions, the start of fall means much more than the end of mowing season!

High in-hospital death rate with asthma flare

|

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - As many as one-third of all deaths from asthma occur in patients who are hospitalized for asthma exacerbations, new research finds.

Such deaths occur as frequently in blacks and in whites, according to the study, and therefore the higher overall mortality in blacks due to asthma cannot be explained by hospitalization.

"Our findings suggest that improvements in the management of asthma exacerbations before hospitalization (e.g., at home, during transportation to the emergency department) will have the greatest benefit in further reducing the overall risk of death and in eliminating race disparities in asthma deaths," Dr. Jerry A. Krishnan, of the University of Chicago, and colleagues conclude.

Children of allergy sufferers prone to same problem

|

Infants, whose parents suffer from allergies that produce symptoms like wheezing, asthma, hay fever or hives, risk developing allergic sensitization much earlier in life than previously reported, according to a study by U.S. researchers.

The study suggests that the current practice of avoiding skin testing for airborne allergens before four of five years old should be reconsidered, so that children in this high-risk group can be detected early and monitored for the possibility of later allergic respiratory disease.

How Lamb and Pears Can Help Your Food Allergy

|


by Jack Prime, 11 Oct 2006

Lamb and pears may appear to be a strange combination, but the reason they are chosen as part of a food allergy diet is because they are rarely indicated in allergies and are therefore relatively safe foods for most people with a food allergy to eat.

Often the best way to treat a food allergy is to avoid the food that causes the allergy altogether so a period of exclusion gives your body a chance to tell you which foods are making you ill and whether you react to one food or many foods.

The gluten-free life

|

by Melissa Pasanen, Free Press, 10 Oct 2006

Munching on crisp croutons from a bowl on the kitchen table, 8-year-old Mariah Hanson waited impatiently for the supper she had helped make with her mom, Diane.

The lasagna and bread sticks were sending out good smells from the oven and the Caesar salad -- to be topped with any croutons that might remain -- was ready.

After Diane served her daughter a plate of lasagna and salad, Mariah carefully pushed them apart to prevent the two from touching: a typical kid move from a kid whose dietary needs are not all that typical.

Just more than 10 months ago, the Hanson family of South Burlington learned that the reason Mariah had endured almost three years of intermittent terrible stomachaches and bouts of extreme digestive upset was because her body cannot tolerate gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley.

Patients with symptomatic moderate asthma who were treated with anti-tumor necrosis factor alpha, an anti-inflammatory monoclonal antibody, experienced significantly fewer disease exacerbations than individuals taking a placebo.

This research appears in the first issue for October 2006 of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, published by the American Thoracic Society.

EU Health Research Must Prioritise Allergies

|

European public health experts are concerned because “allergic diseases” in all their different aspects - from hay fever to fatal attacks of asthma or reactions to peanuts - are not included in the health priorities of the EU research programme. While allergies are mentioned among the food research priorities, the absence of wider allergy problem as a top concern in health research agenda threatens to comprise overall progress in the understanding of this complex condition.

Study supports theory that pets cut allergy risk

|

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Some people prone to allergies keep their homes pet-free, a study shows -- but such "avoidance" of furry companions only partly explains the lower allergy risk found among pet owners.

The findings, published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, lend some support to the theory that growing up with a pet trains the immune system to be less reactive to potential allergy triggers.

Americans accustomed to the seasonal misery of sneezing, runny noses and itchy, watery eyes caused by ragweed pollen might one day benefit from an experimental allergy treatment that not only requires fewer injections than standard immunotherapy, but leads to a marked reduction in symptoms that persists for at least a year after therapy has stopped, according to a new study in the October 5 issue of i The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). The research was sponsored by the Immune Tolerance Network, which is funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), both components of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International.

Experimental hay fever vaccine effective

|

BALTIMORE, Oct. 5 (UPI) -- Baltimore researchers have successfully used an experimental DNA-based vaccine to protect against ragweed allergies, commonly known as hay fever.

Patients receiving the vaccine showed an average 60 percent reduction in allergy symptoms compared to those receiving a placebo, say researchers at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

The NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE (Vol. 355, October 5, 2006, No.14), today reported that a new approach to allergy therapy not only reduced the acute allergic responses of individuals with ragweed allergies but also sustained that effect for over 12 months. The novel treatment, called "AIC" in the paper, is a TLR9 agonist linked to ragweed allergen, developed by Dynavax Technologies Corporation (Nasdaq: DVAX).

GMOs And Allergies: Tests May Help Answer Questions

|

The potential of genetically engineered foods to cause allergic reactions in humans is a big reason for opposition to such crops. Although protocols are in place to ask questions about the allergy-causing possibilities, there has been no test that offers definitive answers.

But all of that could change as a Michigan State University researcher has developed the first animal model to test whether genetically engineered foods could cause human allergic reactions. Venu Gangur, MSU assistant professor of food science and human nutrition, has received a $447,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to validate the test.

Allergic rhinitis (AR), more commonly known as "hay fever" can have a profound impact on the daily lives of sufferers beyond its physical effect -- including psychological well-being, sleep quality, and ability to learn and process cognitive input, according to a new article scheduled to appear in the on-line issue of Allergy and Asthma Proceedings.

"The Burden of Allergic Rhinitis," authored by Robert A. Nathan, M.D., Clinical Professor of Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Allergy and Immunology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, provides an overview of the impact of AR in our society based on findings in the landmark 2006 Allergies in America Survey (AIA) and other noteworthy surveys and studies conducted in the US and Europe. In his article, Dr. Nathan describes the negative cascade of events that adults and children can experience as a result of this condition.

full story

Allergy-free Cats For Sale At $3,950 Each

|

Allergy-free CatsIf you are allergic to cats, would like to have one and have $3,950 spare, this may be your lucky day. Allerca Inc., California, USA, says it has managed to breed the world's first hypoallergenic cats. People who are allergic to cats and buy one of these will not experience sneezing, red and itchy eyes or asthma - except in very acute cases.

The company says that as soon as the news got out people rushed to place orders and now there is a waiting list.