The Daily Telegraph states “We’ve cracked it”
Yes on 30 January 2014, this well respected newspaper headlined on its front page “We’ve cracked it: scientists announce breakthrough treatment for nut allergies”. For such a small nut, this peanut therapy was certainly making some waves.
I knew that the trial results were going to be published at the end of January but not for one moment did I think it would make it to the ‘hallowed halls’ of the BBC. So imagine my surprise when I turned on my TV to watch BBC Breakfast and there was the familiar face of Dr Pamela Ewan sitting on the famous red couch talking about the development of this immunotherapy.
So you might be asking “what’s all the fuss about?” Well, if you’re not allergic to nuts, you probably won’t appreciate how this allergy can take over your life. Allergy sufferers live in constant fear of having a reaction. It’s not all about rashes and swelling: it can be fatal. It’s bad enough as an adult to cope with this kind of allergy but imagine what it’s like as a child and the impact it has on your family and friends. These children are denied their childhood unable to play with their friends, go to parties and have sleep-over’s. They have to question everything they eat and touch: it means growing up, fast. Now with this new therapy, they are being thrown a lifeline back to normality and to childhood.
They say “never work with children” but this has to be a great exception! I watched 11 year old Lena Barden on TV describing her involvement in the study and I was really touched by her comments. She said “I was nervous at first. I hated peanuts. They’re disgusting and weird. But I was curious about what they tasted like. Last year I had my first doughnut, with traces of nuts, and it tasted amazing. I feel so much more safe.”
Because of the “Lena’s” of this world it brings home to me that what we do at Global Regulatory Services (GRS) really can be life-changing and makes those never ending days and sleepless nights worthwhile. I’m incredibly proud of Cambridge University Hospitals and their achievements and delighted that GRS has had this opportunity to work with them: already we’re looking forward to the future and continuing our work with the Team to make peanut immunotherapy widely available to patients.
To see the press release, please click here.
Author: Greer Deal, Director of Global Regulatory Services (GRS)