New guidelines released in January 2017 say that feeding peanut to young infants at high risk for developing peanut allergy can play a role in preventing that condition. In an effort to discover more details about who among the high-risk infants will go on to develop peanut allergy, researchers from the Consortium of Food Allergy Research followed children from infancy to around age 7.
As infants, all the 511 children in the study had the risk factors of either moderate to severe eczema or a likely egg or milk allergy.
In a poster presentation at the 2018 AAAAI/WAO joint congress, researchers reported a significant number – 40 percent – of these infants went on to develop peanut allergy. Additional key risk factors for that allergy were found to be: not being breastfed, younger age at study enrolment, and higher Ara h2 IgE and higher peanut-specific IgE.
A number of things, such as gender, ethnicity, parent history of allergy, using soy formula and having siblings were not associated with the development of peanut allergy in this group of children.
“The information can help allergists clue in on prediction of outcomes and alert them for prevention and treatment options,” said Dr. Scott Sicherer, chief of the division of allergy and immunology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and one of the study authors.
The researchers said that the protective aspect of breastfeeding warrants more study.
For full coverage of the AAAAI/WAO joint congress, see here.