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Northwestern University and University of Michigan researchers have adapted a technique, used for treatment of multiple sclerosis and celiac disease, to train the immune system to tolerate allergens. The technique involves wrapping the allergen in a biodegradable polymer that initially hides the allergen from the immune system. The wrapping disappears only during the end-stage of the immune response (debris removal), when reactions do not occur. 

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Holiday treats are everywhere your child goes this time of year: school parties, friends’ fetes and good old grandma’s house. The preponderance of festive fodder can be overwhelming to a parent of a child with life-threatening food allergies. Rein in the anxiety and check this list twice for handy tips from a mom and teacher, doctor, and FARE (Food Allergy Research Education organization). Hopefully, you’ll sleep easier and have visions of sugar plums rather than Epi-pens dancing in your head.

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On October 30, 2013, the CDC published the first national comprehensive guidelines for school food allergy management.

The CDC guidelines seek to protect the physical and emotional health of students with food allergies by providing practical information and strategies for schools while reinforcing federal laws and regulations. The guidelines are intended to support the implementation of school food allergy management policies in schools and early childhood programs, and guide improvements to existing practices. Implementing these guidelines may help schools reduce allergic reactions, improve response to life-threatening reactions, and ensure current policies are in line with laws that protect children with serious health issues.

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Even though the market for gluten free products is over $4 billion there was no standard definition for the term "gluten-free". The "gluten-free" label on products "was in good faith," says Celiac Disease Foundation CEO Marilyn G. Geller. "You spent a lot of time in grocery stores hoping that the company labeling products 'gluten-free' was adhering to a voluntary standard."
The FDA has issued new rules, products labeled "gluten-free" must contain less than 20 parts per million of the protein—or about an eighth of a teaspoon of flour in 18 slices of gluten-free bread. That's low enough for most people who have mild to severe gluten allergies.
Follow the link to the official FDA press release and links to further info.

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 The start of summer means vacation travel is coming.  This article offers some good tips when travelling to foreign countries like carrying allergy translation cards (available from Allergy UK).

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