Saturday, 12 January 2013

Asthma Patch Designed

A patch containing proteins sourced from dust mites has been designed. The patch is designed to be worn on the arm or stomach and gradually release small amounts of the protein onto the skin. It is believed that over a period of a few months the body will develop almost an immunity to the dust mite faeces, which cause inflammation of the bronchi and bronchioles.

To this day it is unclear what precisely causes allergies to the dust mites, however it is believed to be the protein in the faeces. On touching or inhaling the protein the chemical histamine goes to the site of the lungs and airways, and cause inflammation and difficulty breathing.

This form of therapy is called immunotherapy, where the immune response is gradually either reduced (in this case) with long term exposure to the offending protein. After a few months the patched are thought to be no longer needed, they would have “taught” the body not to over react to the protein. The body will no longer see the proteins as a threat, and so will not react.

This is an excellent creation and as well as reducing the intensity of asthma in adults, it is thought that is may be able to stop dust mite related asthma in children. Brilliant.  

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