A randomized controlled study of peanut oral immunotherapy: Clinical desensitization and modulation of the allergic response

Department of Pediatrics, Division of Allergy and Immunology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA.
The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology (Impact Factor: 11.25). 03/2011; 127(3):654-60. DOI: 10.1016/j.jaci.2010.12.1111
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Open-label oral immunotherapy (OIT) protocols have been used to treat small numbers of patients with peanut allergy. Peanut OIT has not been evaluated in double-blind, placebo-controlled trials.
To investigate the safety and effectiveness of OIT for peanut allergy in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study.
In this multicenter study, children ages 1 to 16 years with peanut allergy received OIT with peanut flour or placebo. Initial escalation, build-up, and maintenance phases were followed by an oral food challenge (OFC) at approximately 1 year. Titrated skin prick tests (SPTs) and laboratory studies were performed at regular intervals.
Twenty-eight subjects were enrolled in the study. Three peanut OIT subjects withdrew early in the study because of allergic side effects. During the double-blind, placebo-controlled food challenge, all remaining peanut OIT subjects (n = 16) ingested the maximum cumulative dose of 5000 mg (approximately 20 peanuts), whereas placebo subjects (n = 9) ingested a median cumulative dose of 280 mg (range, 0-1900 mg; P < .001). In contrast with the placebo group, the peanut OIT group showed reductions in SPT size (P < .001), IL-5 (P = .01), and IL-13 (P = .02) and increases in peanut-specific IgG(4) (P < .001). Peanut OIT subjects had initial increases in peanut-specific IgE (P < .01) but did not show significant change from baseline by the time of OFC. The ratio of forkhead box protein 3 (FoxP3)(hi): FoxP3(intermediate) CD4+ CD25+ T cells increased at the time of OFC (P = .04) in peanut OIT subjects.
These results conclusively demonstrate that peanut OIT induces desensitization and concurrent immune modulation. The current study continues and is evaluating the hypothesis that peanut OIT causes long-term immune tolerance.

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