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Gut bacteria can protect you from food allergies

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Clostridia, which is a common gut bacteria, can help you against food allergies. A recent study has found that this bacteria can protect you from food allergies by starting immune responses. With the immune responses, food allergens will not be able to enter your bloodstream and cause food allergies. Clostridia reduces exposure of the allergen and thereby prevent sensitisation, which is a very important step in food allergy development.

 Food Allergies

Food allergies have been an untreatable condition till now. However, the recent results from the study will help in development of probiotic therapies for the condition. So thinks the scientists of the University of Chicago, who performed the research on mice. The results were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Food allergy is a deadly immune response to specific foods. The actual cause of food allergy is not known. In the recent years, food allergy has increased about 50% among children. The causes of such food allergies may be various. Modern hygienic and dietary practices often imbalanced the bacterial population in the human body. Antibiotic and antimicrobial drugs also imbalance the necessary microbial population and as a result more cases of food allergies are reported. High-fat diets, or worries of antibiotic, caesarean birth may be some of the common causes of food allergies.

To find out how gut bacteria affect food allergies, the research team look into the results in mice in response to food allergens. Germ free mice, which were born and raised in sterile conditions and who did not have resident microorganisms and antibiotic treated mice were exposed to peanut allergens. The researchers found that such mice showed strong immunological response and produced higher levels of antibodies against the allergens in comparison to mice with normal gut bacteria.

When they added a mix of Clostridia bacteria into the mice, they regain the sensitisation to food allergens. When they reintroduced Bacteroides, another major group of bacteria present in the intestine, the mice did not regain sensitisation. It shows that Clostridia have a unique and protective role in case of food allergies.

For identification of the protective mechanism, the research team studied the bacteria for molecular and cellular immune responses in the gut. The results of their detailed study showed that Clostridia induced a signalling molecule for prevention of allergens into the bloodstream.

The bacteria protects you against food allergen sensitisation. For sensitisation of the food allergen, it has to get into your blood and present to the immune system. The bacteria can control the process.

Genetics greatly affects the possibility of development of food allergies and their appearance. However, the recent identification of the bacteria and the barrier protective response induced by it can open a new paradigm that may help in prevention of sensitisation to food. Clostridia is a common bacteria present in humans and many potential therapeutics will target the bacteria for prevention of food allergies. Further studies are necessary to find the test compositions that can be used in a probiotic therapy method.

This is an important discovery as it provides the knowledge which is the important bacteria in case of food allergies and what is the way to control the whole process. As the disease has no remedies till now, this can be a groundbreaking discovery, which will help in the development of drugs against food allergies. In that case, people won't have to worry about anything while taking a bite of food. The people and children affected by the life-threatening disease without any cure at present, soon may have a solution for their food allergy problems and that will be a great discovery to have.