Science Questions

Why isn't there a vaccine for hayfever?

Sun, 22nd May 2011

Listen Now    Download as mp3 from the show Scratch 'n Sneeze - Science of Allergies


@Puffles2010 asked:

Why isn't there a vaccine for hayfever?


Rick -   Vaccines boost and stimulate the immune system and the problem with hayfever is an over reactive, unnecessarily reactive immune system.  So really, we need an anti-vaccine.  I guess because itís easier to start an immune response than stop one, weíre likely able to have a single shot, but that's as Pam was telling you, maybe a more softly-softly approach could work.

Chris -   Pam, anything to add to that?

Pam -   Well, there is a special desensitising vaccine that you can use for pollen allergy which works quite well, so that's not a normal sort of vaccine as Rick was saying which would stimulate the immune system, but there is an allergy vaccine which can work.

Chris -   Is that sort of using the same principle as your gently-gently, softly-softly approach to peanut stimulation?

Pam -   Itís different.  No, itís doing it by injection, so itís giving an injection into the skin.  So, that systemic sort of stimulation to the body, but otherwise, similar principle, yes.


Subscribe Free

Related Content

Not working please enable javascript
Powered by UKfast
Genetics Society