In March this year, researchers from the 𝘈𝘶𝘴𝘵𝘳𝘢𝘭𝘪𝘢𝘯 𝘕𝘢𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯𝘢𝘭 𝘜𝘯𝘪𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘴𝘪𝘵𝘺 made a fantastic discovery.
They realised that a protein we produce in our bodies significantly influences our immune system’s reaction to allergens.
People who produce less amount of Neuritin have a higher risk of dying of 𝐀𝐧𝐚𝐩𝐡𝐲𝐥𝐚𝐱𝐢𝐬 and developing 𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐞𝐫𝐠𝐢𝐞𝐬.
Studies in mice showed some key components that mediate allergic reactions were substantially raised in mice lacking Neuritin.
They proceeded to give Neuritin to those mice, and it managed to restore the lost function, decreasing the production of 𝐈𝐠𝐄 and other 𝐚𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐛𝐨𝐝𝐢𝐞𝐬.
To make matters more important, it was also found that Neuritin also plays a vital role in decreasing 𝐚𝐮𝐭𝐨-𝐢𝐦𝐦𝐮𝐧𝐞 𝐝𝐢𝐬𝐞𝐚𝐬𝐞, 𝐚𝐬𝐭𝐡𝐦𝐚 and the control of 𝐜𝐚𝐧𝐜𝐞𝐫 cells.
This means we might have a chance to introduce a protein our body produces and give it to patients who are deficient in it, helping them either outgrow their 𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐞𝐫𝐠𝐢𝐞𝐬 and 𝐚𝐬𝐭𝐡𝐦𝐚 or decrease the severity of the symptoms.
It was first described more than 60 years ago but only recently started to be more noted and looked into.
In 2011 the 𝘌𝘶𝘳𝘰𝘱𝘦𝘢𝘯 𝘍𝘰𝘰𝘥 𝘚𝘢𝘧𝘦𝘵𝘺 𝘈𝘨𝘦𝘯𝘤𝘺 raised concerns regarding the high levels of amines (histamine included) present in foods bought in supermarkets, which might be considered a health risk.
Symptoms can happen due to either deficiency of the enzymes that degrade histamine or medication, leading to decreased enzymatic activity.
The main symptoms depend on the organs affected
The best way to reduce symptoms is by either reducing or stopping eating foods containing histamine or taking antihistamines.
The use of DAO (Diamine Oxidase) supplements is still debatable.
Dr Costa is a Consultant Paediatrician and fellow of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.