Researchers develop Drug to protect from Food Allergies.....

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by AJME, Mar 10, 2003.

  1. AJME

    AJME New Member

    Dear All,

    Below is article about a new drug to protect people from Food allergies (peanuts this case). I heard that this drug should work for all food allergies. The drug seems to restrain the IgE molecule.

    I seem to OVERreact to many foods and a drug like this might be benefitial to FM/CFS people who are sensitive or OVERreactive to Foods like me.

    ********Excerpt from below article************

    The peanut allergy drug is designed to catch hold of immunoglobulin-E, or IgE, a molecule that plays a major part in asthma and allergies

    ********Full Article**************************

    Researchers have developed the first drug that can protect the 1.5 million Americans who are allergic to peanuts - the leading cause of all allergy deaths.

    The monthly shots are not a cure. But doctors believe the still-experimental drug should let people avoid severe complications if they unknowingly eat one or two peanuts, the typical accidental exposure.

    "Basically, we would not be seeing people in the emergency room or the morgue from peanut accidents," said Dr. S. Allan Bock, an allergist from Boulder, Colo., who was not part of the study.

    However, the drug is a few years away from going on the market. Its critical third round of tests has been stalled by legal infighting among the three companies with rights to it.

    And Dr. Hugh A. Sampson of Mount Sinai Medical School in New York said patients would need lifelong monthly shots of the drug, called TNX-901, and still would have to guard against eating peanuts.

    Peanut allergies account for 50 to 100 deaths in the United States each year. Some youngsters must eat at a peanut-free cafeteria table or even in an isolated room. Some airlines have stopped serving peanuts to safeguard people allergic to even a whiff of the nut.

    Peanut allergies have been rising in recent decades. No one is sure why, but a new study found that baby creams or lotions containing peanut oil may lead to peanut allergies.

    Babies whose rashes or eczema were soothed by such creams were more likely to become allergic to peanuts than those whose creams did not include peanut oil, said Dr. Gideon Lack of St. Mary's Hospital at Imperial College in London.

    Lack's study - and research on the effectiveness of the allergy drug - were presented Monday in Denver to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. They will be published Thursday in the New England Journal of Medicine, which released them Monday on its Web site.

    The study was paid for by one of the drug's developers, Tanox Inc., and by grants from the Peanut Board, the Peanut Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

    The peanut allergy drug is designed to catch hold of immunoglobulin-E, or IgE, a molecule that plays a major part in asthma and allergies.

    In a study, 84 people with immediate allergic reactions to peanuts got monthly shots of either a placebo or TNX-901 for four months. There were three different doses of TNX-901; neither doctors nor patients knew who got what.

    Those on the highest dose could handle an average of almost nine peanuts' worth of peanut flour at the end, compared with about a half-peanut at the start. And five of them ate the equivalent of 24 peanuts without reacting.

    "That's a pretty impressive amount," Sampson said.

    The drug also protected people from the even tinier amounts of peanuts that can be present in the air. In addition, several participants reported that other food allergies were lessened, and hay fever symptoms disappeared.

    The drug is likely to be expensive, but none of the companies involved would say what it may cost.

    For 15-year-old Allison Rush, a study participant with a potentially lethal allergy to peanuts, the drug means she will no longer have to be hypervigilant about avoiding even the tiniest bit of peanut contamination.

    Before her first treatment, the equivalent of one-60th of a peanut made her throat start closing up, her skin break out in hives, her face swell, and her blood pressure drop, said her mother, Bonnie Rush. After four monthly injections, it took the equivalent of six peanuts to bring on such an anaphylactic attack.

    "I really can't imagine life for my daughter without this drug," Bonnie Rush said. "It's completely changed her quality of life, her outlook on life."

    TNX-901 is on the fast track for federal approval, but a fight among Genentech, Tanox and Novartis Pharmaceuticals has held up the next round of tests. Even if those tests start, it would probably take three to four years before the Food and Drug Administration approved the drug, Sampson said.

    Jacqui Corba, 13, was not in this round of tests but had been scheduled for the third set. She had to go to the emergency room once for a reaction apparently set off when another student opened a bag of peanuts two tables away from her peanut-free table in the cafeteria.

    "I would love to be relaxed for once," she said.

    Sampson said the study on the role of products with peanut oil was very interesting, but the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network, of which he is medical director, has not been able to find U.S.-made baby products including peanut oil. Merchants on the Internet market at least three, made in other countries and described as gentle and natural.

    Lack noted that the amount of peanut protein in such oils would be "absolutely minute" - one part protein per thousand-million or even million-million parts of oil. "But that may be potentially enough to switch on the immune system," he said.

  2. pam_d

    pam_d New Member

    I read about this yesterday with interest myself! I am newly dx'd with severe food allergies that could be the root of most of my fibro symptoms. Would be nice if there was something better in our future than strict rotation diets & deprivation!!

  3. pam_d

    pam_d New Member

    I can't imagine anyone here being "so excited" about taking drugs, as you put it.

    De-sensitizing shots, which I take now for inhalant allergies, are not "drugs". I take no prescription or OTC drugs for either allergies or FM symptoms. De-sensitizing shots have virtually eliminated my inhalant allergies; like anything else, they aren't for everyone, but they are a drug-free alternative that works for me. For folks with very severe peanut allergies----the kind you can easily die from------a "drug" alternative, when desensitizing shots aren't an alternative, is maybe the difference between life and death. I sure wouldn't want to deny anyone that hope, and what is learned from this may have ramifications for other food allergies. And again, it's only one alternative in what is hopefully a lot of research & learning in the coming years...

    Kudos to you for finding something that works for you, and sharing it with everyone. You could use a little help on your sensitivity and tact, though......

    [This Message was Edited on 03/11/2003]
  4. pam_d

    pam_d New Member

    I think you & I agree more than we disagree! Dr. Weil is great, and my approach to FM has always been through diet, supplements. I have had FM for 4 years, and have never used drugs to treat it. That's MY approach, however, and I always remember that; I have enormous respect for all the contributors to this board, all of whom have their own long histories with this illness, often many other diseases along with FM/CFS, and their own choices for dealing with it. To belittle their choices, or "bang a drum" about what I believe, rather than tactfully share or suggest, doesn't respect their choices. We've all got to find quality of life with this illness----I think that's one area we'd ALL agree on----and I am supportive of everyone here in their efforts to do that, no matter what their treatment choices are.

    I'm thrilled for you that you've found a plan that works for you, and shared it with the group.

    It's not what you's the way you said it.

    Good luck with your treatment.