Science Could Crack Peanut Allergy: Expert
Researcher predicts cure, or genetically modified nut
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted May 3, 2008 6:03 AM CDT
A bowl of nuts, some of them peanuts.   ((c) macinate)
camera-icon View 3 more images

(Newser) – Scientists are working to help those with peanut allergies and may even replace nuts with a tasty, genetically modified snack, one expert says. "There are multiple types of studies that are ongoing now," said Dr. Wesley Burks of Duke University. "I think there's some type of immunotherapy that will be available in five years.” And the need for peanut allergy relief is rising, Reuters reports.

The allergy, which develops in childhood, usually stays with sufferers and has doubled among young kids in recent years. Burks also suggested that herbal remedies in animal research could help, or scientists may genetically engineer allergen-free peanuts—though they won't necessarily come out as nuts. "You could end up with a soybean," he said.