15 May 2013

Discovery a step towards preventing allergies

12:15 pm on 15 May 2013

Scientists in Wellington say there's been a major breakthrough in the quest to prevent allergies.

Working with scientists in Sydney, the Malaghan Institute has found a rare immune cell in the skin that could help in the development of a vaccine for eczema, asthma and hay fever.

Institute director Graham le Gros says the discovery is another step towards a vaccine for what he calls the allergic march, which is when eczema develops into asthma and hayfever in infants.

Future research will focus on learning more about these cells and how they could be exploited to stop allergic disease.