A new study led by the Children’s Hospital of Colorado and published in the New England Journal of Medicine, a skin patch delivering low doses of peanut under the skin, could treat young children from 1 to 3 years old peanut allergy.
This experimental patch called Viaskin delivers low doses of peanut under the skin. In a phase 3 trial conducted in the United States, Australia and Europe, 362 young children with peanut allergies were tested to determine their peanut protein tolerance, then were randomly assigned to use either the Viaskin patch or a placebo patch. This patch, placed between the shoulder blades, was changed daily and worn daily for a year.
Two-thirds of children have become desensitized to peanuts
This form of epicutaneous immunotherapy relies on the skin’s immune system to trick the body into tolerating small amounts of allergens. The doses used are lower than those of oral immunotherapies, which reduces the risk of adverse effects. The patch is also easier to get young children to accept than an oral treatment.
Results: Of the 362 children who participated in the clinical trial, 84.8% completed the trial. Children were considered desensitized if they could tolerate the equivalent of about 1 to 4 peanuts after treatment (enough to protect them from accidental exposure).
The efficacy of the treatment was observed in two thirds of the children in the group who received the Viaskin patch compared with one third of the children in the placebo group. A difference significant enough to decide to continue the trials, to determine how long children should wear a patch before being immunized.
Source : Phase 3 Trial of Epicutaneous Immunotherapy in Toddlers with Peanut AllergyNEJM May 2023
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