New research suggests that babies may be able to be vaccinated against asthma
It looks like a vaccine for asthma may be on the horizon, as scientists have found that a certain probiotic prevents breathing disorders in mice, The Mirror reports. The researchers from the University of Alabama at Birmingham found that asthma caused by adult exposure to cockroach waste was blocked in mice that were vaccinated as newborns.
This isn’t the first time lead author Dr. John Kearney studied the effects of probiotics on asthma symptoms. His previous studies found similar studies—after vaccinating mice with bacteria, he observed that they did not develop adult asthma after exposure a fungal allergen and house dust mites.
“The exposure has to happen early—in human equivalents, probably within the first two years”
“It’s pretty amazing,” Kearney told Science Daily. “We started doing neonatal immunizations in all three asthma models, and we found that all three were protected against asthma-like symptoms.”
Published in The Journal of Immunology, the study found that mice immunized with the probiotic worked if newborns were immunized, but not adults. “The exposure has to happen early—in human equivalents, probably within the first two years,” he explained. “The kinds of immune cells that appear early in life appear to change later in life.”
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