One allergy treatment that looks set to really make waves in the future is currently being developed by a French firm called DBV-Technologies. On their website, http://www.dbv-technologies.com/en/ there’s an overview of just how their key project, an epicutaneous patch called Viaskin, actually works. As you can see below, the patch is extremely unobtrusive, although no less effective for all that!
The Viaskin patches are sprayed with a layer of protein compounds (allergens), using a special electrospray for optimal evenness of application. Once placed on the skin, a ‘condensation chamber’ is formed between the surface of the patient’s skin and the patch where the allergens are contained. The presence of water naturally produced through the skin solubilizes the dry allergens, greatly facilitating their delivery to the upper layers of the skin, the epidermis. Here they are captured by the Langerhans cells, which play a crucial role in gradually desensitizing the body to the offending allergens. There is no reason why the patch approach cannot be adopted for a range of allergies, and in fact, the company is working on patches to treat egg, peanut and cows’ milk protein allergies.
Categories: Autres langues