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Dose-Response Analysis Could Improve Peanut Allergy Labeling

THURSDAY, April 8, 2021 -- Estimating the dose-response distribution for peanut allergen in the U.S. population could help improve food labeling guidelines for the management of peanut allergies, according to a study published online March 12 in Food and Chemical Toxicology.

Lynne T. Haber, Ph.D., from the University of Cincinnati, and colleagues estimated the dose-response distribution for peanut allergen using data from double-blind placebo-controlled food challenges conducted in the United States at multiple sites. By testing a population believed to be similar to the general U.S. food-allergic population (548 challenges of 481 individuals), the authors examined individual differences in response to allergens as well as differences across studies.

The researchers found a modeling approach that could account for the different levels of data organization (i.e., individuals and sites within a study) and explored the fit of alternative mathematical models. These models estimated an eliciting dose (ED) to set safety limits on allergens. The ED that would elicit an allergic response in 1 percent of individuals who are sensitized to peanut allergen, or ED01, was estimated to be 0.052 mg of peanut protein. The ED that would cause reactions in 5 percent of those tested, or ED05, was estimated to be 0.49 mg of peanut protein. By using the dose prior to the lowest observed adverse effect level (LOAEL) as the new LOAEL, the ED01 would drop to 0.029 mg of peanut protein.

"Our results could aid in establishing improved food labeling guidelines in the management of food allergies," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to health care-related companies.

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