The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Food Allergy Herbal Formulation (FAHF-2)

    During the annual scientific meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), researchers discussed how herbal treatments may be integrated into conventional allergy treatments, including this Chinese herbal formula.

    Here’s what we know about FAHF-2, a Chinese herbal formula being tested to treat food allergies.

    FAHF-2 formulation

    • It’s composed of 9 herbs.
    • Some individual herbs reduced peanut-induced anaphylactic symptoms but no single herb offered full protection from anaphylactic symptoms equivalent to FAHF-2.
    • A simplified formula of the most efficacious tested individual herbs showed only partial efficacy and was not able to reproduce comparably the effects of FAHF-2.
    • This suggests that the herbs of FAHF-2 may work synergistically to produce the therapeutic effects.

    Persistence of response

    • In a mouse model, FAHF-2 treatment established peanut allergy tolerance, which persisted for at least 4 weeks after treatment.
    • Favorable changes in blood chemicals were also reported.

    Animal studies

    • Peanut-allergic mice received FAHF-2 for 7 weeks, and then received 7 oral peanut challenges at intervals over 36 weeks.
    • FAHF-2 provided long-term protection from anaphylaxis by inducing a beneficial shift in allergen-specific immune responses.

    Safety

    • 19 food allergic people were included in the study.
    • FAHF-2 appeared to be safe and well-tolerated in patients with food allergy.

    The bottom line?

    • The formulation of 9 herbs appears to contribute to the efficacy of FAHF-2.
    • The response in an animal model of peanut-allergy appears to last beyond treatment.
    • The response is associated with favorable changes in blood chemicals associated with allergic reactions.
    • Limited data suggest it is safe and well tolerated.

    11/18/10 19:54 JR

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