Category Archives: Allergy

Is Allergies due to salt possible?


Over the past 50 years of existence, the rate of recurrence of hypersensitivities and autoimmune diseases has risen rapidly, but it’s not clear as to why? and what is the reason?  In a study conducted in the field of Science Translational Medicine, analysts indicate a possible cause: salt. The researcher found that lab tests that high concentrations of sodium chloride can control the differentiation of T helper 2 (Th2) cells, the immune cells responsible for allergies, and that high levels of salt are existing in the affected skin of individuals with atopic dermatitis, an sensitive skin condition.

One of the immunologists explains how this topic is completely different and how such studies are needed to be explored more about as there  hasn’t been much progress in understanding this epidemic of allergic disease

Hay fever along with atopic dermatitis both amplified more than two-fold since the 1970s, an increase that analysts do not ascribe to larger responsiveness or analysis. This recent rise in the incidence of allergic infections is to be explained by heritable changes, so it’s possible to be due to an ecological or behavioral cause. “One thing that also changed within the last five to six decades is our diet. We are consuming fast food more often, and this also includes much-added salt, so that’s how this study bought in the attention towards the  uncertainty of whether salt can alter the immune system


This study started by upping the levels of sodium chloride in the tissue culture medium used to grow either human CD4-positive memory T cells, which give off a complex set of chemical signals based on previous exposure to antigens, or naïve T cells, which have not been exposed to antigens before. The salt boosted the production of cytokines and transcription factors specific to Th2 cells, in both cell types, signifying that high salt concentration promotes Th2 cell differentiation.  Also, it was found that the effects of the salt seemed to increase Th2-related programs via two salt-sensitive transcription factors.

Comparison between salt levels in the skin of adults with atopic dermatitis, an allergic condition which causes red, itchy patches of skin. Lesioned skin had sodium concentrations 30-fold elevated level than the patients’ unlesioned skin and skin from controls that were healthy. The team also examined sodium levels in pretentious and unaffected skin of people with psoriasis, an immune system disorder characterized by red color inflamed patches on the skin. Although both atopic dermatitis and psoriasis are both chronic inflammatory skin conditions, psoriasis is interceded by a discrete type of T helper cells. They found no change in salt concentration in psoriatic lesions and healthy skin, which led them to rule out a role for inflammation in the differences in sodium that they noticed in individuals with atopic dermatitis.

New allergy vaccine for hay fever shows promising results

w1Allergy has turned into a typical ailment, and several millions around the globe experience the ill effects of hypersensitive rhinitis, or feed fever, with distresses like colds, weakness and red, bothersome eyes. The analysts have built up an immunization that keeps the advancement of hypersensitivity in mice. It depends on particular sugar atoms that may build the impact of medications and decrease treatment times. New allergy antibody for feed fever indicates promising outcomes.

The present type of immunization can be improved. At first, the objective was to make a fake creation of the proteins on which allergy antibodies are based and to upgrade the proteins making them more compelling and quick working by utilizing sugar atoms. The long haul objective is to diminish the treatment time significantly, while in the meantime bringing down the treatment dosage.w2

Today we have immunizations for a few types of hypersensitivity, including roughage fever. Treatment in Denmark typically takes three to five years and includes standard infusions. Tragically, the immunizations don’t take a shot at everybody. Some are restored, others get less manifestations, while some experience no impact by any means. Another treatment alternative against grass dust hypersensitivity, for instance, is an oral lyophilisate to be taken day by day for a long time.w3

Birch is the test allergen of the new vaccine, which was administered as injections, on mice and in so-called in vitro tests on human cells .Allergen is the substance that can cause allergy when a person comes into contact with or ingests it. Several of the allergens — causing for example hay fever — are so-called glycoproteins. The sugar molecules were attached to the allergen to try to improve the effect of vaccination.w4

In the study that sugar molecules can be used to ensure that an allergen reaches the right cells in the immune system and increases the intake of the vaccine, improving the effect hereof. At the same time, the sugar molecules increase the activity of a different group of cells in the immune system, T cells, which help perform the functional part of the process. The next step is to test more types of sugar molecules to increase our portfolio and hopefully identify more sugar structures which can be used to further develop the vaccine platform. The researchers are seeking to further develop the vaccine to make it effective enough to be used on human allergy patients. The method of optimising a vaccine using sugar molecules — can potentially also be used to optimise treatments for other diseases. Instead of coupling sugar molecules with allergens, the researchers may simply couple it with different proteins.

Researchers are uncovering which sugar molecules are useful in connection with vaccines — and not just vaccines for allergy, but vaccines in general. This theory is based on the role of sugar molecules in the immune system’s reactions to various diseases. This method can potentially also be used within fields such as cancer and autoimmune disorders.

Do egg allergies affected ones are safe to use Influenza vaccine?

Flu-vaccine-and-egg-allergyEgg allergy:

One of the most common allergy-causing foods for children is eggs. Usually we find symptoms and signs ranging from mild to severe and can include skin rashes, hives, nasal congestion, and vomiting or other digestive problems after eating eggs or foods containing eggs a few minutes to a few hours. Medications such as antihistamines may reduce signs and symptoms of a mild egg allergy as these drugs are taken after exposure to eggs but they aren’t effective for treating a severe reaction or preventing an allergic egg reaction.

Eggs in vaccines:

As per several types of the seasonal flu (influenza) vaccine contain small amounts of egg protein. No one with an egg allergy should receive the nasal spray version of the flu vaccine according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); also you shouldn’t get your flu shot at a drugstore or a supermarket pharmacy if you are allergic to eggs.

A flu vaccine should be given by injection which is safe for most egg-allergic people to deal with potential adverse effects, including anaphylaxis as long as it is equipped in a medical office. An injected flu vaccine (the recombinant vaccine) which does not contain any egg protein is approved for use in people ages 18 to 49. Yellow fever is most commonly found in parts of Africa and South America; which also contains egg protein. And hence both the World Health Organization and CDC state that a severe egg allergy is a contraindication for that vaccine.

Egg Allergy Management and Treatment:

  • Eating eggs is the best way to avoid egg allergy.
  • Food labels must be read and should be habituated in usage of alternatives with eggs recipes.
  • As some flu vaccines and the yellow fever vaccines contain egg protein in varying amounts it should be informed to the respective health care providers about your egg allergy and care should be taken.

Gene Silencing Technology

Year 2018 welcomes the novel family of FDA approved drugs for inherited diseases. These drugs which are backed by a Nobel Prize and 2 decades of research have the ability to cure inherited diseases without actually editing the delicate genome. It is said that they are powerful enough to give a backseat to CRISPR based gene therapy. One such drug is “Patisiran” developed by biopharmaceutical company-Alnylam for treatment of genetic nerve damage. It works on RNA interference (RNAi) technology.

As we all know that DNA along with messenger RNA (mRNA) produces proteins via transcription and translation process. RNAi does the work of shooting down the messenger and erasing the message for protein production. Scientists believe that this will be greater method for treatment of inherited genetic or immune disorders than gene therapy or immunotherapy. Gene therapy involves cutting out the mutated gene region and replacing it with the new gene but this tampering may have certain risks like ethical regulations, unspecific gene region cut and unpredicted changes in gene silently leading to cancer activation. However RNAi ensures that no bad disease is developed and no bad protein is produced by shooting down the compilation of the message by mRNA.akk

RNAi not just works on inherited diseases but also on non-inherited diseases like stroke too. In Stroke, group of proteins get activated together to kill the brain cells. RNAi can stop such activation thus protecting the brain cells. Sometimes even good proteins can turn bad upon being faced by any pathogenic situation leading to a disease. As RNAi are reversible when compared to gene therapy, RNAi can be used to silence the proteins temporarily in such circumstances and restore them back to their normal functional state after the change in situation.

So the question arises. If function of RNAi is really that great and it was discovered long back in 1998, what’s stopping this RNAi or RNA technology developed drugs to enter the market? It seems that the production in this technology is easy but the real problem lies in targeting and delivering the therapy to the specified tissue in question. RNAi works by addition of small snippets of synthetic nucleotides which homes the RNAi, delivers it to the disease-causing RNA to silence it. The problem that arises is host immune system gets triggered upon the introduction of these nucleotide snippets in the body and the activation can lead to massive inflammation and even death. To avoid the immune system risk these snippets can be coated in nanoparticles but they will just end up in liver or kidney thus making the RNAi treatment difficult to reach brain, heart or lungs.

Patisiran was successful and approved by FDA for treatment of rare disease called hereditary transthyretin-mediated amyloidosis (hATTR) by targeting the liver itself. The drug doesn’t encounter the delivery problem as the drug wrapped in nanoparticles will be delivered to patients through infusion. As Alnylam Company is focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of RNA interference therapeutics for genetically defined diseases, this approval has given a huge leap for the company to go forward with the technology. The company is seen developing other RNAi-based candidate therapies that aim to treat high cholesterol, bleeding disorders, and Parkinson’s disease.

Solar urticaria in infancy : Affects 2% of children who are exposed to the sun


Solar urticaria is triggered by sun exposure resulting on exposed skin. Most cases are reported in the adult population. However, cases do occur in children. Solar urticaria in infancy has been rarely reported.

How common is sun allergy?

Solar urticaria is a rare allergy that occurs around the world. It can affect you at any age. It can even affect infants.

Solar urticaria is a rare photodermatosis characterized by pruritus, stinging, erythema, and wheal formation after a brief period of exposure to natural sunlight or an artificial light source emitting the appropriate wavelength. Photosensitivity disorders in children include a wide array of conditions, many of which are unique to this age group. A dermatologist’s consultation is essential in such cases for specific instructions and counselling of parents regarding photo protection in these children. This intervention may improve the quality of life by reducing the morbidity and chances of early mortality.

Treatment of solar Urticaria

  • Use of antihistamines and sun protection with appropriate clothing and sunscreen. A minority of patients would not respond to these measures.
  • Solar urticaria may present at the first year of life. Accurate diagnosis is crucial to avoid unnecessary testing and to manage patients appropriately. If diagnosed properly such patients can be adequately treated and continue to enjoy activities outside. Sometimes it will disappear on its own.2

    How can you help prevent solar urticaria flare-ups?

    There are some things you can do to prevent or reduce risk for solar urticaria:

    Limit sun exposure

    Consider phasing in during outdoor time

    Wearing closely woven clothes with maximum coverage

    Wearing clothing with UPF protection factor greater than 403

Are you really allergic to Penicillin?

1Penicillin, the first and widely used antibiotic for treating several bacterial infections was first discovered by Dr Alexander Fleming. Fleming found out that Pencillium notatum has the capability to produce the compound for destruction of surrounding bacterial cells. The discovery led to production of penicillin antibiotics for wide applications in hospitals. The Penicillin synthesized by various species of the Penicillium mold can be of 2 types. One is the naturally occurring penicillin which is formed during the mold fermentation process and the 2nd type is the semisynthetic penicillin which is synthesized by altering the structure of 6-aminopenicillanic acid found in all natural penicillin. The structure and characteristics of the antibiotic are changed to meet the desirable requirements like Oral medication, drug effectiveness and so on.

The mechanism involved is Penicillium produces the chemical compound penicillin upon facing danger from different microbes like Staphylococcus bacteria and so on. The compound inhibits the bacterial growth enzyme and also activates several enzymes required for cell wall breakdown. As a result, bacterial cells are killed. As human cells lack cell wall, penicillin is safe to be used. Well that’s what we assumed at the earlier days.

Now however, with the allergies on the rise against several antigens, penicillin allergy is one of the most common drug allergy witnessed by several people worldwide. Penicillin allergy is the reaction of the host immune system to the antibiotic drug penicillin. The common symptoms of the allergy include rash, swelling, hives, itching and so on. Severe reaction includes anaphylaxis, the life threatening condition which can affect several systems of the body and cause death. Penicillin and some other compounds with similar properties can cause the allergic reactions however some events i.e the side effects faced after intake of penicillin is misunderstood for allergies. Doctor consultation is a must to differentiate and realize whether the reactions are just adverse side effects or allergies.

Penicillin Allergy Evaluation must be appropriate as it can combat infections and reduce antibiotic resistance. It was observed that 95% of patients with penicillin allergy indication in medical records were truly not allergic and showed to have increased infection risk of MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) and Clostridium difficile (C. difficile). Thus drug allergy must be done appropriately to overcome dangerous infections and antibiotic resistance which are huge public concerns.



We all had the experience of facing one region in our body in swollen pinkish red colour state. The pain touching or using that region of the body was unbearable at times. We might have cursed or gotten irritated a lot but it’s just the immune system working against a foreign agent.

Inflammation is the basic reaction of the immune system to heal itself after an injury or to fight against the several pathogens out there. So the next time you scrape your knee and it gets red or you catch a cold and have a runny nose, let’s realize that its acute inflammation which is a natural, healthy process which helps your body heal.

So what’s the story behind chronic inflammation? Well let’s just say that inflammation can become chronic when the natural process gets hay wired i.e. your immune system gets triggered constantly releasing a flood of chemicals which will damage your cells. Medical diagnosis of chronic inflammation is done by measurement of C-reactive protein level, which is the marker for inflammation. But there are other signs of chronic inflammation which you can spot by yourself, such as:

  • Having spare tire around your waist (belly fat)
  • Having high blood glucose levels
  • Having digestive problems like gas, diarrhoea, bloating, or constipation.
  • Facing fatigue, allergies and skin problems like eczema or psoriasis
  • Facing gum disease, brain fog and erectile dysfunction (in case you are a male species)

Well if you have these signs then make sure you visit your doctor and start taking control by changing your lifestyle. Firstly cut out the highly inflammatory foods like sugar, grains and include more lean protein, vegetables, and healthy fats in your diet. Regular exercise, meditation, good sleep and healthy food are the simple solutions to combat chronic inflammation.

Can Hep C be transmitted from mother to fetus?


Hepatitis implies irritation of the liver. At the point when the virus effects the liver became inflamed and cause severe infections, its capacity can be influenced. Substantial liquor utilizes, poisons, a few solutions, and certain medicinal conditions would all be able to cause hepatitis. Notwithstanding, hepatitis is frequently caused by an infection.

Most ladies wind up pregnant amid the years about 20 and 40, which is additionally the age gather in which the frequency of hepatitis C disease is rising generally rapidly. Any lady with hazard factors for hepatitis C, (for example, introduction to transfusions, polluted needles, or infused sedate utilize) ought to be screened for hepatitis C previously and amid pregnancy. The risk of a pregnant women passing the hepatitis C infection to her unborn baby /child has been identified with the levels of quantitative RNA levels in her blood, and whether she is likewise HIV positive.

The danger of transmission to the newborn child is less (0 to 18%) if the mother is HIV negative and, in the event, that she has no history of Intravenous medication utilize or of blood transfusions. Transmission of the infection to the embryo is most astounding in ladies with hepatitis C RNA titer more prominent than 1 million duplicates/ml Moms without hepatitis C RNA levels recognized did not transmit hepatitis C disease to their newborn children. There is no preventive treatment as of now that can impact the rate of transmission of the infection from mother to baby.

Pet Allergy


Cats (Felis catus) and dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) are most sought out companions by humans as pets for company, entertainment or protection. There are 20+ million pets in worldwide homes with USA ranking first, followed by Europe, Asia, Middle East and other countries. The most common problem faced by several animal lovers is allergies. It is also observed that the cat allergies are twice as common as dog allergies.

Allergy is the reaction caused by the immune system upon exposure to any foreign substance. As such the person with cat allergy will show immune reaction when in proximity of cat or dogs. Veterinary Allergology is the allergic reaction to proteins found in an animal’s skin cells, saliva or urine. Though many people think that they face allergy due to cat or dog fur, it’s a huge misconception. The actual allergic potential is protein (Fel d 1) found in the animal’s saliva, dander and urine. All cats produce Fel d 1 and the size and shape of the protein molecule is conducive to remain airborne for a long period of time. Hence the molecule sticks to carpets, fur, fabrics and other surfaces making highly sensitive people face allergy symptoms even though they are feet away from cats.

Allergy cure is not yet known so far since the allergens are several and diagnosis takes time. Vaccination and Immunotherapy are rapidly approaching to combat allergy, but till there is a complete cure the best way to prevent allergy is to avoid the allergen, but if you are a cat lover and allergic will you stay away from cats?

The cat breeds which are known to cause less allergic reactions due to their less dander, less fur shedding and lower Fel d 1 production are:

  • Cornish Rex
  • Devon Rex
  • Oriental Shorthair
  • Javanese
  • Balinese
  • Russian Blue
  • Siberian
  • Sphynx

Research shows that though all cats produce the allergen, cat owner can own the following cat breeds which cause fewer allergy symptoms than others and can do certain actions to reduce the allergic effects caused by their pets. For example, Household hygiene, cat hygiene, HEPA air purifier installation and steam cleaning carpets can all help reduce exposure to allergens. So all the cat allergic individuals who wish to have cats as pets give it a thought but make sure you maintain your health and your cat’s hygiene.