Tag Archives: Johns Hopkins

What is Available for Milk Allergy?

Sublingual and Oral Immunotherapy Shows Promise for Milk Allergy

 I’ll summarize the most recent advances in treating milk allergy from the article below.  Why is our current therapy not enough?  Guess what happens when a patient allergic to milk suffers from accidental ingestion?  Anaphylaxis! Why not cure the disease–Johns Hopkins is a long way from Oklahoma, but patients have access to this same research here in the Midwest. 

 By Will Boggs, MD

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) Jan 02 – Sublingual and oral immunotherapy may help some children with milk allergy, but clinical desensitization is quickly lost and systemic reactions occur with oral therapy, a new study shows.

“We found that both sublingual and oral immunotherapy benefited children with cow’s milk allergy in that they were able to consume much more milk without symptoms at the end of the study than they could at the beginning of the study,” said Dr. Corinne A. Keet from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore.

“However, oral immunotherapy, which used higher doses, was more effective,” she told Reuters Health by email.

The new findings appeared online November 30 in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

All children started out on sublingual therapy, with dose escalation over six weeks. Then they were randomized to either sublingual maintenance therapy (goal dose, 7 mg) or one of two doses of oral maintenance therapy (goal dose, 1 g and 2 g). The maintenance periods lasted 60 weeks each.

“One result that surprised us was how quickly children could lose desensitization,” Dr. Keet said. “This is another reason for caution with these methods.”

“These methods are far from perfect, and I think are not ready for general use in allergy practices,” Dr. Keet concluded. “They show a lot of promise, but many aspects, including both safety and efficacy, need to be improved before widespread adoption of this method.”

“One alternative which is getting more attention recently is to use milk in baked goods to desensitize,” Dr. Keet added. “For some children, this is a good option, but some children are unable to tolerate even the small amounts of milk in baked goods needed to start desensitization. So, for many children with milk allergy there aren’t any good alternatives.”

SOURCE: http://bit.ly/tYwuuh

J Allergy Clin Immunol 2011.

Here’s what you need to know:

1.  DON’T try this at home

2. Milk allergy may be a “curable” disease, but we don’t know how long patients will have to ingest milk to become “desensitized”.

3.  If you’re interested in participating in a clinical research trial here in the Midwest on milk allergy, please let me know. 

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Genetic Research in Asthma

Researchers look to genetics to understand African American-asthma link

Genetic map of 1,000 African Americans mapped for asthma research
 By Meredith Cohn7:00 a.m. EST, December 29, 2011
 For the full link, click here.

Researchers working to discover why African-Americans disproportionately suffer from asthma are planning to map the genetic code of 1,000 people of African descent in four years.

The Johns Hopkins-led team of experts in genetics, immunology, epidemiology and allergic disease want to know why up to 20 percent of black people have asthma. The disease afflicts 20 million Americans, causes difficultly breathing, wheezing and tightness in the chest and can lead to hospitalization and death.

What’s different about this study from all the rest?

  •  About $9.5 million in funding comes from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health.
  • The study results will be publicly available though a national database maintained by the National Library of Medicine, an NIH member.  Usually, research studies are NOT available in a public format.
  • The study of 500 asthmatics and 500 non-asthmatics from 19 U.S., Caribbean, South American and Western African academic researcher centers aims to identify genetic variations that may be associated with elevated disease risk.  The important point here is that black people have different genetics for asthma depending on where you live or grew up.  The more you know the less you know!

How does all of the “genetic research” improve asthma care?  Here’s a video that explains an exciting potential for genetic research—>