Pulsed light technology reduces peanut allergy

Pulsed light technology reduces peanut allergy

Peanut allergy is one of the most common food allergies that affects 1.9 million people in the United States, according to Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE).

With a peanut allergy, it can be difficult to avoid certain foods, so a recent study used a “special tool” that may decrease allergenic proteins in whole peanuts.

Published in the journal Food and Bioprocess Technology, the study was led by Wade Yang, assistant professor in food science and human nutrition at the University of Florida. Yang’s goal is to reduce 99.9 percent of peanut allergy in whole peanuts.

Yang and his colleagues decided to use an ultraviolent light technology to eliminate allergenic proteins to protect these individuals. These tools include two lamps filled with xenon, two cooling blowers, one treatment chamber with a conveyor belt, and a control module.

“This is a useful system since peanut processing typically begins from roasting whole peanuts,” Yang said, in a statement.

As a result, Yang was able to remove 90 percent of the allergenic proteins in whole peanuts, but hopes one day to take the next step to conduct humans for clinical trials.

“This process proves that pulsed light can inactivate the peanut allergenic proteins and indicates that pulsed light has a great potential in peanut allergen mitigation,” Yang said.

Dr. Christine Mueller, family practice physician at Advocate Sherman Hospital in Elgin, Ill., explains that there is vaccine available for less severe allergic cases.

“Avoidance is key and there is the whole processing of food issue that should be addressed with promotion of nonGMO,” Dr. Mueller says.

Dr. Mueller also states that organic food sources can play an important role in decreasing inflammation and allergy reactions.

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  1. Ernst Lamothe Jr October 27, 2014 at 12:08 pm · Reply

    Courtney, I know a lot of people who have a peanut allergy. Sometimes if they are even within inches of it, it causes them anxiety.

  2. Lynn Hutley

    Great news! I never realized how many places you find peanuts until I met a co-worker whose son has a severe peanut allergy.

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