Abstract

Food allergies affect 2% to 4% of adults and 6% to 8% of young children in westernized societies and account for approximately 30,000 emergency room visits with an estimated 150 deaths per year in the United States (1,2). Peanut, tree nuts, cow’s milk, egg, soybean, wheat, and seafood are responsible for over 90% of food allergies in children. In adults, peanut, tree nuts, and seafood are the primary food allergens causing severe reactions, and fruits and vegetables trigger milder symptoms, primarily oral pruritus (3-5). Childhood food allergy to cow’s milk, egg, soybean, and wheat typically resolve, whereas peanut, tree nut, and seafood allergy tend to be lifelong (6,7). Epidemiological data indicate that the prevalence of peanut allergy doubled in the past 5 to 10 years (3,8), now affecting about 1% of young children. Peanut is the leading trigger of food allergy fatalities (9). Considering the above factors, food allergy is an important target for research on curative treatments.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAllergens and Allergen Immunotherapy, Fourth Edition
PublisherCRC Press
Pages429-446
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781420061987
ISBN (Print)1420061976, 9781420061970
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2008

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