Immunotherapy effective for egg allergy

The physicians used egg-white powder in escalated doses to desensitise the children in a placebo-controlled study involving 55 participants aged five to 18 years at multiple sites in the US.

They performed an oral food challenge with egg-white powder and cooked egg at 10 months and again at 22 months after the study began.

Half of the children in the active arm passed the first challenge but none of those given a placebo (cornstarch) passed. Some 75% of children given egg sensitisation passed the second test.

“We found that oral immunotherapy provides protection in a majority of children with egg allergy… and represents a highly promising therapeutic intervention for food allergy,” the authors concluded.

But they said parents should be warned not to try the approach at home.

"This experimental therapy can safely be done only by properly trained physicians," said Dr Anthony Fauci,