In the Sunday’s annual meeting of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, Houston, Texas, findings of the first results if the clinical trial were presented. Early stage clinical tests have shown that a new skin patch is proving effective in fighting peanut allergies. The skin patch called Viaskin Peanut patch is being tested on several individuals across multiple countries to check for efficacy and safety.  The results proved the patch’s efficacy in preventing life-threatening reactions to peanuts.

It is known that over three million Americans are allergic to nuts, and the greater fraction is allergic especially to peanuts. A new study by a France-based biotech firm, DBV, has helped come with a potential solution for sufferers of peanut allergy. The firm has introduced a Viaskin Peanut patch that is to be worn by individuals as a simple skin patch. Although the therapy is still in the testing phase, it is proving to be promising.

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As of now, the study has been conducted on 221 subjects of age diversity between six years and 55 years. While 113 people were under 12 years of age, 73 aged between 12 and 17 years. Countries that participated in the test include the U.S., Poland, the Netherlands, Canada and France.

The treatment works by infusing a small dose of peanut protein in the outer layers of the skin. This helps in triggering an immune response, but not enough to release antigens into the blood, hence preventing allergic shocks. Before giving away the patches to people, they were tested to see how much peanut protein is needed to elicit a reaction in them. They were given patches of 50,100 or 250 micrograms of peanut protein accordingly. Patients were tested after a period of one year to see if their threshold against the protein increased. The treatment was found to be significantly effective in most of the subjects.

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