Catishoo! Scientists on the brink of creating a new jab to treat cat allergies

Researchers are working on a vaccine that could prevent itching, sneezing and watery eyes caused by cat allergies that affect one in 10 people.

Tests with a simple injection have so far been successful and it has been found not only to be safe and effective but it also lasts longer than current treatment.

Further trials have yet to be carried out but if they are successful it is hoped the principle can be applied to treat hay fever sufferers and people with other allergies.

The research was carried out by Circassia, a biotechnology company based in Oxford, and the McMaster University in Ontario, Canada.

Steve Harris, chief executive of Circassia, said that the results are "extremely good news".

He said: 'By achieving a significant reduction in symptoms after just four doses, whilst also proving extremely well tolerated, our novel T-cell vaccine has demonstrated the true potential of ToleroMunie to revolutionise allergy treatment.'

In the past, regular allergy shots have been considered to be the best way to treat allergies but that is difficult and expensive.

'Those synthetic peptides were mixed together to make the vaccine,' said Larché.

'We picked the peptides that would work in as much of the population as possible.'

The volunteers were then given a low dose of the vaccine four to eight times a year and it was discovered that the side effects associated with traditional shots did not occur.

They were then subjected to cat allergens and recorded the change in their symptoms. It was found that patients experienced a 55 per cent improvement in their symptoms.

Beyond treating cat allergies they hope to use the therapy for people who are allergic to house dust mite, ragweed, grass, birch tree and moulds.

Source: Daily Mail

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