Last week, we attended “The Future of Food Allergy Prevention" Symposium hosted by Dr. Kari Nadeau, SpoonfulONE founder and head of Stanford University's Sean N. Parker Center for Allergy and Asthma Research. The symposium featured pediatric immunology and allergy experts from the US, Japan, the UK, Australia, Ireland, and Switzerland who reviewed their research covering topics as diverse as moisturizer and bathing frequency, gut microbiome, and prebiotics/probiotics on the development of allergic disease.
In the first part of our series, we’ve summarized the key takeaways about moisturizers and skin barrier protection that pediatricians immediately put into clinical practice.
Helen Brough, PhD, MBBS from King’s College London and Donald Leung, MD, PhD from National Jewish Health in Denver, Colorado spoke of the relationship between a baby’s skin and food allergy risk. They reviewed how the dual allergen hypothesis* continues to show that any exposure to food particles or food ingredients through the skin can lead to sensitization in early life.
3 key takeaways to share with parents of newborns:
Please be on the lookout for future articles summarizing other topics from the symposium. Access the full talk here.
*We like the way Scientific American summarized the process by which an infant’s skin can play in food allergy development: “The dual-allergen exposure hypothesis is the theory that exposure to food allergens through the skin can lead to allergy, while consumption of these foods at an early age may actually result in tolerance, as Lack explains in a 2012 article. Depending on the balance of these exposures, either tolerance or allergy will “win.” Children with eczema, for example, have a disrupted skin barrier that could allow exposure to food proteins in the environment – such as peanut oil in creams or peanut residue on tables. Under the hypothesis, if these children avoid peanuts but are still exposed to them in the environment, they might be more likely to develop peanut allergy.”