Risk Of Asthma May Be Lessened By Early Exposure to Cats
Children exposed to domestic cats have a decreased risk for developing asthma according to a new study from the University of Virginia Health System.
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, asthma is the leading cause of chronic illness in children, and the incidence has increased more than 75 percent in school age children during the past 15 years.
This study, published in the latest issue of The Lancet (Issue 10, March 2001), demonstrates that while children with high exposure to cat allergens develop an immune response to the animals, they do not exhibit symptoms of asthma.
“The children’s response to cat allergens also suggests that this form of tolerance could be a principal goal of immunotherapy,” said a professor of internal medicine and microbiology and lead investigator of the study.
“This data is