If you are allergic to dust mites (and then chances are you are), help might be in route.
Researchers at the University of Iowa allow us a vaccine that can combat dust-mite allergies by naturally switching the body’s immune response. In animal tests, the nano-sized vaccine package lowered lung inflammation by 83 percent despite repeated exposure to the allergens, according to the paper, published in the AAPS (American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists) Journal. One big reason why it works, they contend, is because the vaccine package contains a booster that alters your body’s inflammatory response to dust-mite allergens.
“What is totally new relating to this is we’ve developed a vaccine against dust-mite irritants that was not used before,” says Aliasger Salem, professor in pharmaceutical sciences in the UI and a corresponding author around the paper.
Dust mites are ubiquitous, microscopic buggers who burrow in mattresses, sofas, along with other homey spots. They’re present in 84 percent of households in the United States, according to a published, national survey. Preying on skin cells on the body, the mites trigger allergies and the like among 45 percent of those who suffer from asthma, according to some studies. Prolonged exposure can cause lung damage.
Treatment is restricted to getting temporary relief from inhalers or undergoing regular exposure to develop tolerance, that is long term and holds no guarantee of success.
“Our research explores a novel approach to treating mite allergy by which specially-encapsulated miniscule particles are administered with sequences of bacterial DNA that direct the defense mechanisms to suppress allergic immune responses,” says Peter Thorne, public health professor in the UI along with a contributing author around the paper. “This work suggests a means toward alleviate mite-induced asthma in allergy sufferers.”
The paper’s first author is Vijaya Joshi, a graduate fellow in pharmacy at the UI. Contributing authors, all from the UI, include Andrea Dodd, Xuefang Jing, Amaraporn Wongrakpanich and Katherine Gibson-Corley.
The nation’s Institutes of Health (grant numbers: P30 ES005605, R21 CA1 13345-01, R21 CA1 28414-01), the American Cancer Society and the UI’s Lyle and Sharon Bighley professorship funded the research.