Food allergies are at best, an inconvenience or a worry, and at the worst, potentially fatal. They affect hundreds of millions of people each year and their impact is particularly strongly felt in the Western world. Companies like DBV-Technologies – http://www.dbv-technologies.com – have been working hard to develop ways of diagnosing and treating these kinds of allergies, and their research is finally starting to bear fruit. One key breakthrough has come with the development of a milk allergy treatment in the form of an adhesive patch, the Viaskin® patch.
Cow’s milk protein allergy is an especially common allergy, impacting on up to 3% of children and infants, so this solution really does have the potential to change a lot of lives for the better. The patch contains minute amounts of a protein compound, the allergen that triggers the body’s allergic reaction. Through the controlled, gradual release of this compound, the patch can ‘desensitize’ the body’s immune system to the allergen over time. A similar patch has also been created for those suffering from peanut allergy (see below).