First published at Really Good Quotes.

I’ve never been bothered by allergies – right up until this past couple weeks. Luckily, they are just seasonal allergies to all the killer pollens out and about in my neighborhood.

Others, are not quite as lucky. Some people have terrible allergies to a number of things. One of the most up and coming allergies isn’t really new, but the frequency and virulence of the allergic reaction seem to be on the rise.

Peanuts can cause an anaphylactic reaction in some people who are allergic to the lowly peanut. I used to work with someone who had that response and this was about 20 years ago. So the whole idea isn’t new. Even so, schools have gone so far as telling their entire student population that peanut butter sandwiches cannot be brought to school because of allergies among some of the students enrolled.

Northwestern University has announce they may have found a way out of this particular problem. They are hoping they can solve other food allergies, as well.

They are tricking the immune system that has gone awry. They produce a tolerance to peanuts by attaching peanut proteins onto blood cells and introducing them into the body.

“We think we’ve found a way to safely and rapidly turn off the allergic response to food allergies,” said Paul Bryce, an assistant professor of medicine in the division of allergy-immunology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Bryce and Stephen Miller, professor of microbiology-immunology at Feinberg, are co-senior authors of a paper published in the Journal of Immunology.

This type of procedure has been used in the past to treat autoimmune diseases but this is the first time it has been used to treat an allergic reaction.

But, wait! There’s more. Not only does this seem to alleviate the allergic reaction, but it also has a second benefit of creating a more balanced immune system and increasing T cells. These important cells help regulate the immune system to keep it from believing the peanut proteins are evil. Instead, they are seen as normal.

T cells come in different varieties and the therapy turns off the dangerous Th2 cells that see peanut protein as invasive as well as turning on the good, calming, regulatory T cells. Since we humans are supposed to be able to eat peanuts without dying, this helps to bring the patient’s immune system back into stasis.

In mice, after two treatments, they were no longer reactive to deadly peanuts. After successfully testing the peanuts, the researchers also tried the same experiment with eggs. They were also successful in this experiment.

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