A newly approved drug to treat food allergy may be a game changer, Elizabeth Tracey reports


Omalizumab is the chemical name for Xolair, an asthma medication that’s been around for decades that has just gotten FDA approval to treat food allergy. Robert Wood, an allergy expert at Johns Hopkins and one author of a recent study demonstrating the benefit of the drug for managing food allergies, is pleased about the outcome.

Wood: It really took the kind of phase three study that the FDA was going to be looking for to have any hope that it might actually be an approved product for patients for food allergy. The mechanism of this drug is very straightforward. The reason people develop allergy, whether it be an environmental allergy driving your asthma or a food allergy is because their immune system has produced these antibodies called IgE. This is called anti IgE so it literally is blocking the antibodies in the patient for whatever they're allergic to.  :32

Wood believes most insurance will eventually cover the medicine. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.