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April 2006 Briefing - Allergy

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Allergy for April 2006. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Carbon Particulate Matter May Exacerbate Allergies

FRIDAY, April 28 (HealthDay News) -- Inhalation of elemental carbon ultrafine particles (EC-UFP), a major component of urban air pollution, causes a significant increase in airway inflammation in sensitized mice when given 24 hours before an allergen challenge, according to a study in the April issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

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Grass Allergen Tablets Cut Need for Medication

THURSDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- A once-daily, sublingual grass allergen tablet appears to be safe, well tolerated and effective at reducing symptoms in allergic patients, according to study findings published in the April issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. The tablet was developed in order to make immunotherapy easier to deliver and to reduce adverse events.

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Rural Life May Protect Children from Asthma

WEDNESDAY, April 26 (HealthDay News) -- Children growing up in cities in India have almost four times the asthma rate as children in rural India, according to a report published in the April issue of the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

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FDA Warns of Danger of Oxygen Regulator Fires

WEDNESDAY, April 26 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has received 12 reports of incidents in which oxygen regulators used with oxygen cylinders have exploded or burned, in some cases causing injury. The accidents appear to be caused by re-use of plastic crush gaskets designed for single use, resulting in an improper seal and oxygen leakage, according to the FDA and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

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TNF Genotype May Play a Role in Asthma Susceptibility

TUESDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- A genetic variant that alters the expression of tumor necrosis factor (TNF) may protect against asthma through its role in mediating inflammatory responses to air pollutants, according to a study published in the May issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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Not All Apple Varieties Cause Same Allergic Reaction

TUESDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- Patients who are allergic to apples may not have the same adverse reaction to all varieties of the fruit, as some apples appear to be more allergenic than others, according to a study in the April issue of the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

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Childhood Exposure to Dust May Protect Against Asthma

MONDAY, April 24 (HealthDay News) -- Early exposure to dust containing the endotoxin or extracellular polysaccharides from microbes, including fungi, appears to bestow protection against developing asthma later in life, according to a study published online April 5 in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

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Corticosteroid May Harm Respiratory Distress Patients

WEDNESDAY, April 19 (HealthDay News) -- Methylprednisolone is no better than placebo at improving mortality rates in patients with persistent acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and may increase the risk of death if started more than two weeks after the onset of ARDS, according to a study published April 20 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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'Cytokine Storm' May Explain U.K. Clinical Trial Disaster

MONDAY, April 17 (HealthDay News) -- The experimental antibody drug TGN1412 that caused organ failure in six British men but not in test animals may have triggered a "cytokine storm" immune reaction, according to a news report published in the April 13 issue of Nature.

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Infant Snoring Linked to Parents' Snoring in Atopic Families

THURSDAY, April 13 (HealthDay News) -- About 15 percent of the infants of atopic parents are frequent snorers, and frequent snoring in infants is strongly associated with snoring in their parents, but not with environmental tobacco smoke, according to research published in the April issue of Chest.

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Telithromycin May Be Effective as Asthma Treatment

WEDNESDAY, April 12 (HealthDay News) -- Telithromycin may benefit patients with acute exacerbations of asthma, according to a study published in the April 13 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Older Men at Greater Risk from Excessive Alcohol Intake

MONDAY, April 10 (HealthDay News) -- Older men with conditions such as gout, anxiety disorder, hepatitis, ulcer disease and those on medication for conditions such as insomnia, allergies or pain should be given lower recommended thresholds for safe drinking, according to a study published online March 30 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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New Labeling for Macugen After Adverse Reports

MONDAY, April 10 (HealthDay News) -- Due to post-marketing reports of anaphylactic reactions in some patients, Pfizer is updating the product labeling for Macugen (pegaptanib sodium injection), which is indicated for the treatment of neovascular (wet) age-related macular degeneration, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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