New hay fever jab promises year long relief for sufferers

Relief is in sight for millions of hay fever sufferers with the promise of a jab, which lasts for a year, that significantly reduces symptoms.

The new injection could be available within two years if clinical trials prove to be successful.

Hay fever or seasonal allergic rhinitis occurs when pollen, airborne chemicals and dust particles trigger an over-reaction on the part of the immune system.

It is usually more common from mid-spring to early summer when the pollen count is highest but it is possible to suffer from hay fever throughout the year.

Symptoms include sneezing, a runny nose, congested nose, postnasal drip, blocked ears, watery, bloodshot eyes, itchy of nose, throat, ears, eyes, and/or skin, fatigue and trouble sleeping.

Therapies include antihistamines taken by orally which often relieve mild to moderate symptoms, many of which are available as over-the-counter drugs.

Injections of glucocorticoids are also effective, but their effect lasts for only a few weeks, and there are side effects associated with prolonged steroid therapy.

Newer products such as leukotriene receptor antagonists have also proven to be very effective in dealing with allergic rhinitis, without the common side-effects of drowsiness, they are long-acting and are taken orally once a day.

Many people suffer with severe symptoms but millions experience mild or moderate symptoms.

The new injection developed by the British company Allergy Therapeutics is called Pollinex Quattro and has already undergone preliminary trials in the United States, Canada and Europe with 1,028 patients at 94 centres, all with along history of hay fever - a few side effects have been reported.

The Pollinex Quattro injection is given four times, once a week over a period of a month, and its effects last for at least a year.

The researchers say the vaccine offered good protection against hay fever caused by grass pollens, the most common trigger of hay fever in the final-stage trial and the patients showed significant and clinically meaningful improvement in their symptoms.

Allergy Therapeutics intends to apply for approval for the vaccine in the European Union next year.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
Post a new comment
You might also like...
Towards Zika preparedness: immunogenicity insights from vaccine research