I love peanut butter. It is the most goddamn versatile food in existence. My best friend, however, is allergic to peanut. Every time when I hum a song and spread peanut butter on Oreos, she is so envy of me but have to whisper to herself “It’s not tasty.”
But recently, scientists have developed peanut allergy shots that may stop peanut allergy. It’s such a good news for those who are allergic to peanut but want to have a try.
Stopping the allergic reactions
In people who are allergic to peanut, an immune-signaling molecule called interleukin-33 (IL-33) will activate a series of reactions, leading to mouth and throat itchiness, hives, breathing difficulties and sometimes anaphylactic shock, which can cause death.
Scientists have developed an antibody called etokimab, which can interfere with IL-33 and stop the allergic reactions.
To test its effectiveness, the research team conducted 15 people with severe peanut allergies. And it turns out that 73% of the people who received the antibody could eat a peanut without an allergic reaction. Then, 45 days after the single injection, 53% of those people could eat another peanut.
“By inhibiting IL-33, we potentially inhibit features of all allergies, which is promising,” said senior author Kari Nadeau.
The antibody injection may change millions of lives
According to statistics, food allergies affect an estimated 32 million people in the United States. Among all the allergies, peanut allergy is the third most common food allergy, after cow’s milk and eggs. Besides, peanut allergy is the most common food allergy to send people into an emergency room. If antibody injection can be popularized, it can benefit millions.
Scientists are now planning to have a large-scale study. Maybe in the near future, antibody injection can be put into use. And you can enjoy the tasty peanut butter with just a peanut allergy shot.