Advancing a Cure

Research Grants

FARE is the largest private source of funding for food allergy research. Below you can read excerpts about FARE’s research grants that are currently underway, as well as details about select completed FARE research grants.


FARE Investigator in Food Allergy Awards

The FARE Investigator in Food Allergy Awards
 provide salary and research support over a two- to five-year period, allowing outstanding new and mid-career investigators to direct, or redirect, their career toward the study of food allergy, including developing the theories, tools, methods or approaches to study this area. In 2015, FARE announced two new investigator and three mid-career FARE Investigator in Food Allergy Awards.

2015 New Investigator Award Recipients

Jessica O’Konek, PhD
University of Michigan (Ann Arbor)

Dr. O’Konek is researching the modulation of food allergy responses with nanoemulsion-based allergy vaccines, exploring the possibility of providing protection against anaphylaxis with intranasal administration of nanoemulsion combined with egg or peanut antigens.

Duane Wesemann, MD, PhD
Brigham and Women’s Hospital (Boston)

Dr. Wesemann seeks to identify the extent to which primary Ig repertoires can be influenced by microbial and dietary exposures early in life and examine how modification of these exposures can reduce the allergic response to food.

2015 Mid-Career Investigators Award Recipients

Simon Hogan, PhD
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Dr. Hogan’s work focuses on identifying the key proteins and cells that cause the blood vessel fluid leak leading to severe anaphylaxis triggered by foods. This knowledge will have important implications for developing new treatment strategies and therapeutics for preventing the development of severe, life-threatening food reactions.

Michiko Oyoshi, PhD
Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School

Dr. Oyoshi will examine the role of maternal antibodies transferred to babies through breast milk in inducing oral tolerance in children. This study may support potential beneficial effects of maternal allergen exposure during pregnancy and lactation on protecting babies from food allergy.

Erik Wambre, PhD
Benaroya Research Institute (Seattle)

Dr. Wambre will investigate the specific T cell responses to peanut allergic components to determine the cellular and molecular mechanism associated with peanut sensitization, as well as those that lead to restoration and maintenance of protective responses.

AAAAI/FARE Howard J. Gittis 3rd/4th Year Fellowship/Junior Faculty Research Award

Emily McGowan, MD

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD
Folic Acid Supplementation: A Risk Factor for the Development of Food Allergy?

Dr. McGowan is examining whether folic acid supplementation, either in utero or in early life, is a risk factor for the development of food allergy. She and her team chose to examine folic acid because food allergies started to become more common in the 1990s, which corresponds to when folic acid was added to grains/cereals and was recommended as a pregnancy supplement to prevent neural tube defects (birth defects of the brain, spine or spinal cord) in newborns. From a scientific standpoint, folic acid is also known to change the expression of certain genes, which may contribute to the development of food allergy. If folic acid proves to be a risk factor for developing food allergies, researchers could target safe folic acid levels to both prevent neural tube defects and minimize the risk of developing food allergy in future generations. If investigators find that only certain individuals are at risk for this folic acid effect, intervention would be limited to those at increased risk.

Clinical Trials

Wesley Burks, MD

University of North Carolina School of Medicine, Chapel Hill, NC
Peanut Sublingual Immunotherapy Trial

Dr. Burks’ previous studies on sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) and oral immunotherapy (OIT) for peanut have shown that both approaches are able to desensitize most patients to a degree that is likely to prevent allergic reactions after accidental ingestion. However, while SLIT appears to be far safer than OIT, it produces a less robust desensitization effect. The long-term objective of this study is to develop a safe and effective treatment for peanut allergy that will enable patients to develop tolerance. To that end, this study of 48 patients aims to determine whether 36 months of treatment with peanut SLIT will result in clinical tolerance. It also seeks to define the changes in the body’s immune system that lead to tolerance. Dr. Burks and his team hope that this study will provide a strong scientific basis for the development of SLIT and other treatments that aim to produce long-term clinical tolerance to peanuts and other foods. This study is also being conducted at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. 

Stacie Jones, MD
Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Little Rock, AR
Walnut oral immunotherapy in tree nut-allergic children and adults

Patients with tree nut allergy are typically allergic to multiple tree nuts (walnuts, almonds, cashews, etc.) and most retain their allergy for a lifetime. The participants in this study are allergic to walnut and at least one other tree nut.  Dr. Jones and her team hypothesize that walnut oral immunotherapy (OIT) will reduce the severity of these patients’ response to multiple tree nuts (desensitization).  This study seeks to whether walnut protein OIT can desensitize patients to walnut, whether walnut protein OIT can desensitize patients to other tree nuts and whether this therapy promotes tolerance – that is, can it produce changes in the immune system that might allow patients to safely eat problem foods, even after treatment is discontinued?

Hugh A. Sampson, MD
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY
Oral immunotherapy combined with humanized monoclonal anti-IgE antibody (omalizumab) in the treatment of cow’s milk allergy

Milk allergy is the most common cause of food allergy in infants and young children, and usually develops in the first year of life. Several studies have suggested that milk-allergic children who receive milk protein oral immunotherapy (OIT) may become desensitized to milk, resulting in short-term protection against accidental ingestion of milk products. However, these children did not develop "tolerance"—long-term protection even after milk immunotherapy is stopped.
Dr. Hugh Sampson and his team are trying to learn if combining Xolair® (omalizumab) with milk OIT will be safer and more effective than OIT alone in inducing tolerance—not just desensitization—to milk.  Xolair, an asthma medication, may reduce allergy symptoms by attaching itself to IgE, the major antibody that triggers allergic reactions to food.
At key points in this study, participants will undergo an oral food challenge to determine if they have become desensitized to milk. If so, sometime after stopping treatment, these patients will be tested for tolerance.
The study, which is co-funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and FARE, is being conducted at three centers: Mount Sinai, Stanford University School of Medicine (Stanford, CA), and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine (Baltimore, MD). Enrollment is complete; FARE will provide results when available.

Hugh A. Sampson, MD
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY
Oral Immunotherapy for wheat allergy

Wheat is a common cause of food allergy in infancy and childhood. Since wheat is widely used in westernized diets, strict avoidance is very common and accidental ingestions are frequent. Studies of oral immunotherapy (OIT) for milk, egg, and peanut allergy have shown promising results, although adverse reactions are not infrequent. This study is evaluating the safety and effectiveness of OIT for wheat allergy. Four centers are participating in this study: Mount Sinai, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine (Baltimore, MD), Lurie Children’s Hospital (Chicago, IL), and Stanford University School of Medicine (Stanford, CA). Enrollment is complete; FARE will provide results when available.

Lynda Schneider, MD, and Andrew MacGinnitie, MD, PhD
Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA
Peanut Reactivity Reduced by Oral Tolerance in an anti-IgE Clinical Trial (PRROTECT)

The goal of the PRROTECT study is to develop a safe and effective oral immunotherapy (OIT) for patients with peanut allergy. The study hypothesis is that combining peanut OIT with Xolair will facilitate fast, safe, and effective oral desensitization. Four sites are participating in this study of 36 patients: Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School; Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia/University of Pennsylvania; Stanford University School of Medicine (Stanford, CA); and Lurie Children’s Hospital/Northwestern University (Chicago). The study is supported by FARE and by Genentech, as well as numerous donors and families in Boston, Stanford, Philadelphia and Chicago. Enrollment is complete; FARE will provide results when available.

Data Administration and Analysis

Ruchi S. Gupta, MD, MPH

Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine/Lurie Children’s Hospital, Chicago, IL
Food allergy manuscript development

Dr.  Gupta and key collaborators launched a concerted effort to retrieve data from the Children’s Memorial Food Allergy Study, which contains data from parents, siblings, and children with food allergy including: skin testing, blood collection and survey data.
Dr. Gupta and her colleagues conducted background literature reviews, performed statistical analyses, and drafted abstracts and manuscripts that will contribute to our understanding of food allergies. Over 10 abstracts have been submitted and accepted for presentation at the annual conferences of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (AAAAI), American College of Asthma, Allergy, and Immunology (ACAAI), European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI), and the Pediatric Academic Society.

Below is a list of successful publications from this project to date, with links to the abstracts for an overview of each study:  

  1. Gupta RS, Lau CH,Donnell A, Hamilton R, Newhall K.  Predicting outcomes of oral food challenges by using the allergen-specific IgE-total IgE ratio. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract 2014; 2(3):300-305. Link to abstract.
  2. Warren C, Gupta RS, Sohn MW, Oh E, Namit L, Garfield C, Wang X, Pongracic J. Differences in Empowerment and Quality of Life among Parents of Children with Food Allergy. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2015; 114 (2): 117-125.e3. Link to abstract.
  3. Dyer A, Rivkina V, Perumal D, Smeltzer BM, Smith B, Gupta RS. Epidemiology of childhood peanut allergy. Allergy & Asthma Proceedings. 2015; 36 (1):58-64. Link to abstract.
  4. Dyer, AA, Lau, CH, Smith, TL, Smith, BM, Gupta, RS. Pediatric emergency department visits and hospitalizations due to food-induced anaphylaxis in Illinois. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2015; 115 (1), 56-62. Link to abstract.

Xiaobin Wang, MD, ScD, MPH
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD
Data administration and analysis core

This FARE-funded project is a collaborative effort between the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health (Baltimore, MD) and Lurie Children’s Hospital/Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine (Chicago, IL). These institutions have formed a consortium that conducts research and publishes manuscripts on food allergy and related conditions, using data from the Children’s Memorial Food Allergy Study, comprising approximately 1300 families (biologic parents and food-allergic child). In addition, the investigators also analyze the data from two other cohorts:  Boston Birth Cohort (8,500 mother-infant pairs) and Chinese Twin Cohort (2,000 twin pairs).

The overarching goal of this project is to discover the genetic, gene-environmental interactions, and epigenetic causes of food allergy. These data are critically needed to advance early risk assessment, prediction, preemptive prevention and cure of this potentially life-threatening medical condition. The investigative team published the first large-scale genome-wide association study of food allergy (Nature Communication, February2015). This study revealed that genetic variants in the HLA-DR and HLA-DQ regions confer significant risk of peanut allergy and such a genetic effect may be mediated by altered DNA methylation of the HLA-DQB1 and HLA-DRB1 genes. 

Below are two examples of recent publications, with links to the abstracts for an overview of each study:

  • Warren CM, Gupta RS, Sohn MW, Oh EH, Lal N, Garfield CF, Caruso D, Wang X, Pongracic JA. Differences in empowerment and quality of life among parents of children with food allergy. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2015 Feb;114(2):117-25. Link to abstract.
  • Hong X, Hao K, Ladd-Acosta C, Hansen KD, Tsai H, Liu X, Xu X, Thornton TA, Caruso D, Keet CA, Sun Y, Wang G, Luo W, Kumar R, Fuleihan R, Singh AM, Kim JS, Story RE, Gupta RS, Gao P, Chen Z, Walker SO, Bartell TR, Beaty TH, Fallin MD, Schleimer R, Holt PG, Nadeau KC, Wood RA, Pongracic JA, Weeks DE, Wang X. Genome-wide association study of food allergy identifies peanut allergy-specific loci and evidence of epigenetic mediation in U.S. children. Nature Communications 2015, Feb 24;6:6304. doi: 10.1038/ncomms7304 Link to abstract.


Fred Finkelman, MD

University of Cincinnati College of Medicine/Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Rapid suppression of food allergy with anti-FceRI antibody

Dr. Finkelman and his team are developing a potential new therapy that could rapidly and safely suppress food allergies. They have developed a monoclonal antibody, a special type of antibody that is grown in the laboratory. The monoclonal antibody targets specific cells that are responsible for the symptoms of a food allergy reaction. It deactivates these cells, making them harmless. In a previous study, the researchers were able to suppress food allergies in mice over a period of weeks. Their FARE-funded study will enable them to continue their work in mouse models with the goal of adapting the treatment to humans and making it work faster -- possibly within 24 hours. If successful, this treatment could be applied to all food allergies, and possibly to other allergic diseases, such as skin allergies. This treatment would be especially beneficial to individuals with difficult-to-treat multiple food allergies, since it would allow physicians to desensitize these patients to all of their allergens at the same time. If this study, which is also funded by NIH, is successful, the next step will be testing in a primate model, which could lead to a Phase 1 clinical trial in humans.

Registries and Repositories

Hugh A. Sampson, MD, and Scott H. Sicherer, MD

Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY
Food Allergy Resource Initiative (FARI)

The Food Allergy Resource Initiative (FARI) is a library of crucial resources for scientists who are conducting food allergy studies. FARI’s purpose is two-fold: (1) to establish the Food-Allergic Disorders Serum Bank and Registry, a repository of serum samples from patients who have been confirmed to have food allergies; and (2) to establish the DNA Food Allergen Repository, which contains complementary DNAs (cDNAs) for the proteins in all major food allergens.  FARI investigators are able to reproduce large quantities of allergenic proteins from the cDNAs. In turn, the proteins are used to develop new diagnostic methods and therapies. These resources are available, free of charge, to any investigator who submits a research protocol that is approved by the Food Allergy Repository Advisory Board.

Select Completed Grants

Described below are a selection of FARE-funded studies that are notable for their impact on the field or that provide particularly valuable information for individuals and families who are living with food allergies.

Wesley Burks, MD
University of North Carolina School of Medicine, Chapel Hill, NC
Oral immunotherapy for peanut-allergic patients

According to a major national prevalence study funded by FARE, peanut allergy is the most common food allergy in U.S. children. Oral immunotherapy (OIT) may prevent life-threatening reactions in these children. During OIT, patients ingest small but steadily increasing doses of a food allergen until they are sensitized to that food. The ultimate goal is to teach the person’s immune system to tolerate the allergen.
Dr. Burks’ study had two aims. First, he and his team used peanut OIT to try to lower the risk of anaphylactic reactions by raising the threshold needed to cause an allergic reaction.  Second, they wanted to determine whether or not this new treatment can permanently change the peanut-specific immune response in peanut-allergic patients.  The results suggest that most children can be desensitized to peanuts if they respond well to the initial treatment and do not have significant allergic gastrointestinal effects.  This data also shows that the immunologic changes are significant. However, the development of long-term tolerance is still under active investigation.  It is important to note that, while this treatment is promising, additional studies must be conducted before it is ready for clinical use.

Gideon Lack, MD
King’s College London, UK
Tolerance to peanut in high-risk children (LEAP Study)

The LEAP (for “Learning Early About Peanut Allergy”) study was primarily co-funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and FARE. The results of this study, published in February 2015 in the New England Journal of Medicine, showed that sustained consumption of a peanut-containing snack by babies at high risk for developing peanut allergy prevented them from developing peanut allergy. Led by Dr. Gideon Lack of Kings College London, researchers tested the hypothesis that foods containing peanut – if started during the first year of life – could elicit a protective immune response rather than an allergic reaction. More than 600 children between 4 months and 11 months of age were enrolled in the LEAP study to compare the likelihood of developing peanut allergy in children who either ate or avoided peanut until the age 5. All of the infants in the study were considered at high risk for developing peanut allergy because they had severe eczema and/or egg allergy. Peanut consumption achieved an 86 percent reduction in peanut allergy at age 5 among children who had negative skin prick tests to peanut at study entry, and a 70 percent reduction in peanut allergy among those who were sensitized to peanut (positive skin prick test) at the beginning of the study.
Whether the children in the trial continue to remain protected will be investigated further in the LEAP-On study, the results of which are expected in early 2016.  

Read this study.

Xiu-Min Li, MD

Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY
Therapeutic effect of Chinese herbal medicine (Food Allergy Herbal Formula 2) on food allergy

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has a long history of human use in China and other Asian countries and is beginning to play a role in healthcare in the U.S. There is also increasing scientific evidence demonstrating the safety and efficacy of TCM for allergic diseases.  With funding from FARE and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Dr. Xiu-Min Li and her team sought to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of Food Allergy Herbal Formula-2 (FAHF-2) as a treatment for food allergy.
FAHF-2 is derived from a classic herbal formula, Wu-Mei-Wan, which has been used in TCM for treating parasite infections and symptoms of food allergy-like conditions. Preclinical studies showed that FAHF-2 was safe and that it completely prevented peanut anaphylaxis in an animal model of peanut allergy. Research also showed that FAHF-2 curbed the activity of specific cells that play a role in the inflammatory process, and that this therapy was effective in treating multiple food allergies.
In this double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study, 68 patients with peanut and/or tree nut, fish, shellfish, and sesame allergies received FAHF-2 or placebo. After six months of therapy, the patients underwent double-blind, placebo-controlled food challenges. Treatment was well tolerated, with no serious adverse events. Researchers report that 44 percent of the subjects had poor drug adherence for at least one third of the study period. The team concluded that FAHF-2 is a safe herbal medication for subjects with food allergy and shows favorable in vitro immunomodulatory effects; however, efficacy for improving tolerance to food allergens is not demonstrated at the dose and duration used.

Read the abstract of this study.

Kari Nadeau, MD, PhD
Stanford University, Stanford, CA
Safety and feasibility of oral immunotherapy to multiple allergens for food allergy

Thirty percent of food-allergic children suffer from more than one food allergy, and those with multiple food allergies are three times more likely to have severe food allergy.  Multiple food allergies also pose greater economic, nutritional and social burdens on patients and their families.

Several studies have been performed and are ongoing to evaluate the effectiveness of oral immunotherapy (OIT) for single food allergies, including milk, egg and tree nut allergy. These protocols take many months or years, and consecutive administration of food allergens in a single step-by-step fashion is cumbersome.  Studies specifically evaluating OIT to multiple food allergens have not yet been performed to address this important need. 

The concept of simultaneous introduction of multiple offending allergens is not new. Subcutaneous multiple allergen immunotherapy (“allergy shots”) has been safely and effectively used for environmental allergens, such as hay fever, for more than a century.

In this study, published in January 2014 in Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology, researchers showed that participants allergic to multiple foods can be safely desensitized to up to five foods simultaneously using a modified OIT protocol. Safety measurements were the primary endpoint of this study, which found that multiple allergen OIT may be feasible and relatively safe when performed in a hospital setting with trained personnel. The authors note that larger, randomized studies are required to continue to test safety and efficacy of multiple allergen OIT.  

Read the abstract of this study

Robert A. Wood, MD
Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD
A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study of sublingual versus oral immunotherapy for the treatment of peanut allergy

Previous studies have shown that both sublingual (SLIT) and oral (OIT) immunotherapy are promising treatments for peanut allergy. However, additional studies are needed to further evaluate the safety and effectiveness of these therapies, and to understand the mechanisms of desensitization and tolerance.

During SLIT, the food allergen is administered under the tongue. During OIT, patients ingest the allergen, which is administered as a powder that is mixed with a harmless food. In this study, partially funded by FARE, Dr. Wood and his team set out to compare the safety, efficacy and mechanistic correlates of peanut OIT and SLIT. Study participants were randomized to receive active SLIT/placebo OIT or active OIT/placebo SLIT. After unblinding, therapy was modified per protocol to offer an additional six months of therapy. Researchers concluded that OIT appeared far more effective than SLIT for the treatment of peanut allergy but was also associated with significantly more adverse reactions and early study withdrawal. Sustained unresponsiveness after four weeks of avoidance was seen in only a small minority of subjects.

Read the abstract of this study.

Ruchi S. Gupta, MD, MPH
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine/Lurie Children’s Hospital, Chicago, IL

Understanding the prevalence of childhood food allergy in the United States

This national survey of 38,480 families was the largest study ever conducted on the prevalence of food allergies in U.S. children. Dr. Ruchi Gupta and colleagues collected extensive information on each food allergy reported, including date of onset, method of diagnosis, and reaction history. Data on race and ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status, and geographic region were also collected.
Key findings include:

  • An estimated 5.9 million U.S. children – eight percent, or roughly two in every classroom – have a food allergy
  • 38.7 percent of the children in the survey had a severe or life-threatening allergy
  • 30.4 percent had multiple food allergies
  • Children with food allergies were most commonly allergic to peanuts (25.2 percent), milk (21.1 percent) and shellfish (17.2 percent), followed by tree nuts (13.1 percent), and egg (9.8 percent)
  • Severe reactions were most common among children with a tree nut, peanut, shellfish, soy, or fin fish allergy
  • Children aged 14-17 years were most likely to have a severe food allergy
  • Food allergies affect children in all geographic regions
  • Asian and African American children were more likely to have a convincing history of food allergy, but were less likely to receive a formal diagnosis when compared to white children

Read the full study>

Ruchi S. Gupta, MD, MPH
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine/Lurie Children’s Hospital, Chicago, IL
Geographic variability of childhood food allergy in the United States
Published in Clinical Pediatrics, September 2012

Children living in urban centers have a much higher prevalence of food allergies than those living in rural areas, according to this FARE-funded study conducted by Dr. Ruchi Gupta and colleagues. In particular, children in large cities are more than twice as likely to have peanut and shellfish allergies compared to those in rural communities. This data suggests that environmental factors play a role in the development of food allergy. 

The results of the study – the first to map children’s food allergies by geographical location in the United States – were published in the September 2012 issue of Clinical Pediatrics. The study included 38,465 children, 18 years and under, who comprised a representative sample of U.S. households. Their food allergies were mapped by ZIP code. Key findings include:

  • In urban centers, 9.8 percent of children have food allergies, compared to 6.2 percent in rural communities, almost a 3.5 percent difference.
  • Peanut allergies are twice as prevalent in urban centers as in rural communities, with 2.8 percent of children having the allergy in urban centers compared to 1.3 percent in rural communities. Shellfish allergies are more than double the prevalence in urban versus rural areas: 2.4 percent of children have shellfish allergies in urban centers compared to 0.8 percent in rural communities.
  • Food allergies are equally severe regardless of where a child lives.
  • The states with the highest overall prevalence of food allergies are Nevada, Florida, Georgia, Alaska, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and the District of Columbia.

The study controlled for household income, race, ethnicity, gender and age. It tracked food allergy prevalence in urban centers, metropolitan cities, urban outskirts, suburban areas, small towns and rural areas.
Read the abstract of this study>

Scott H. Sicherer, MD, PhD
Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY
Prevalence of peanut and tree nut allergy in the United States determined by a random-dial telephone survey: a third 11-year follow-up study  (1997-2008)
Published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, June 2010

Prevalence studies pinpoint how many people in a population have a specific disease at a given time. This was the third of three studies, conducted at five-year intervals by Dr. Scott Sicherer and colleagues, which examined the prevalence of peanut and tree nut allergy in the United States. In the U.S., peanut and tree nut are among the most common causes of fatal and near-fatal reactions to food. The results of all three studies were published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (JACI).
In 1997, following their first national phone survey, the researchers concluded that peanut and tree nut allergies represented “a significant health concern.” The follow-up study, conducted in 2002, showed that the rate of peanut and tree nut allergies had not increased significantly in adults. However, peanut allergy had doubled among children during the past five years. Subsequent studies in the United Kingdom and Canada also showed a high prevalence of peanut allergy in schoolchildren
With the passage of another five years, Dr. Sicherer and his colleagues used the same methodology as in the previous studies to take another look at the prevalence of peanut and tree nut allergies in the U.S. They surveyed 5,300 households — more than 13,500 individuals — and compared the results to the earlier surveys. Among other important data, this follow-up study, published in JACI in June 2010, showed that, while peanut and tree nut allergies continued to remain steady among adults, peanut allergy in children more than tripled from 1997 to 2008. The rate of childhood tree nut allergy also increased, from 0.2% in 1997 to 1.1% in 2008.
Both this study and the 2002 project were funded by FARE; the most recent study was co-funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Read the abstract of this study>

Peanut allergen exposure through saliva: Assessment and interventions to reduce exposure
Published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, September 2006
Dr. Scott Sicherer and colleagues undertook a study to investigate how long peanut protein typically remains in saliva after a meal of peanut butter, and to develop ways to efficiently remove residual peanut protein from the mouth. They found that peanut residue gradually disappeared from the mouth, reaching undetectable levels if participants waited a few hours and had a peanut-free meal. The researchers also tested five methods to remove peanut butter, such as brushing teeth and chewing gum. These methods generally reduced the peanut to levels that were unlikely to cause a reaction. However, some peanut was still detectable in several of the 30 participants. The researchers concluded that peanut-allergic patients require counseling regarding the risks of kissing or sharing utensils.

Read the abstract of this study>