A new inhaled medication has the potential to treat mild asthma and allergies by interrupting the production of an immune system protein that triggers allergic reactions, a new study reports.
The drug, quilizumab, targets the blood cells that produce a protein called immunoglobulin type E (IgE), that serves a key role in allergies.
Quilizumab lowered total levels of IgE in the blood of people with allergies and mild asthma, and kept them low for a month, researchers report in the July 2 issue of the journal Science Translational Medicine.
“The subjects who received the drug not only had a reduction in their total IgE level, it also seemed to block production of new IgE in response to the allergen they inhaled,” said study co-author Dr Jeffrey Harris, principal medical director of immunology, tissue growth and repair for the drug manufacturer Genentech, which produces quilizumab and funded the study.
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