Research funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggests that exposure to specific combinations of allergens and bacteria within the first year of life may protect children from wheezing and allergic disease. These observations come from the Urban Environment and Childhood Asthma (URECA) study, which aims to identify factors responsible for asthma development in children from inner-city settings, where the disease is more prevalent and severe. Since 2005, the URECA study has enrolled 560 children from four cities—Baltimore, Boston, New York and St. Louis. The children all have at least one parent with asthma or allergies, placing them at high risk for developing asthma. The study is following the children from birth, and the current publication evaluates the group through three years of age.
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SV Lynch et al. Effects of early life exposure to allergens and bacteria on recurrent wheeze and atopy in urban children. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology DOI: 10.1016/j.jaci.2014.04.018 (2014).
NIAID Director Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., and Peter J. Gergen, M.D., Medical Officer in the Asthma and Airway Biology Section in NIAID’s Division of Allergy, Immunology and Transplantation, are available to discuss the findings.
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