04 Mar Egg Allergy: Oral Immunotherapy Has Potential for Lasting Benefit
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Edwin Kim, MD MS
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology
Director, UNC Allergy and Immunology Clinic
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, NC
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: The background is that egg allergy remains one of the most common food allergies in childhood and although most patients will outgrow the allergy, it seems that many will carry into their teen years. As a result patients still have many years of risk of anaphylaxis, poor quality of life and potential nutritional deficits. The ability to introduce some amount of egg into the diet could have profound benefit to allergy patients.
The main findings are that after completing up to 4 years of egg oral immunotherapy (OIT), most patients are able to introduce at least baked egg products into the diet. The subset of patients who showed a lasting benefit by passing a food challenge 4-6 weeks after stopping the OIT, generally did even better by being able to introduce lightly cooked egg like scrambled, boiled, or fried in addition to baked egg products. This benefit to the diet seemed to last up to 5 years after stopping egg oral immunotherapy. In addition to the safety, quality of life and nutrition benefits, recent data suggesting that bringing baked egg into the diet can speed up outgrowing the allergy provides a further benefit.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: Egg oral immunotherapy has the potential to allow for introduction of egg products into the diet that can improve safety from allergic reactions and overall quality of life and this benefit can last for years after completing OIT.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?
Response: We need to studies in more diverse populations to ensure that the results are generalizable. It would also be important to get a sense of the minimum effective dose and how long someone needs to be on egg OIT to obtain these lasting effects.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Response: This study and the long-term followup were conducted on behalf of the Consortium of Food Allergy Research (CoFAR) which is a 5 center collaboration funded by the NIH. UNC is one center along with Mt Sinai, Johns Hopkins, Arkansas Childrens, and National Jewish Health.
A 5-year Summary of Real-life Dietary Egg Consumption after Completion of a 4-year Egg OIT Protocol
Kim, Edwin et al.
Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology , Volume 143 , Issue 2 , AB82
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