Monday, June 23, 2008

Chickens Have Secrets to Allergies

A team of researches at King's College London found a "fossilized" version of the molecule responsible for human allergies in chickens. By studying the birds and this molecule, the researches hope to understand why some people develop server allergies and how to stop the body's reactions.

In birds, the molecule is called IgY and is a predecessor to the human version called IgE, which factors into the immune system overreacting during anaphylactic shock and asthma attacks. By understanding why IgY doesn't cause problems in birds, researchers can pinpoint why IgE does cause problems in humans. 

More research has to be done, but asthma sufferers and those with debilitating allergies may have a solution due to chickens and their ancient molecule.   

(Original reporting done by the BBC.)

No comments: