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Can early allergen exposure prevent food allergy?

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The controversy continues over whether children can be protected from developing food allergies by deliberately giving them foods to which they might be allergic in the early months. Most official guidance continues to recommend delayed introduction, although evidence suggesting benefit from doing the opposite is accumulating. Recently the LEAP trial suggested that early peanut exposure is protective in atopic children (Du Toit G et al. NEJM 2016. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1414850). But what about other foods?

A London-based group designed a trial to try and answer this (EAT Trial: Perkins M, et al. NEJM 2016; doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1514210). They recruited over 1300 exclusively breast-fed infants from the …

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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