Food Allergies: Novel Mechanisms and Therapeutic Perspectives

Methods Mol Biol. 2016;1371:215-21. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-3139-2_14.


Childhood food allergy (FA) rates have rapidly increased with significant direct medical costs for the health care system and even larger costs for the families with a food-allergic child. The possible causes of food allergy become the target of intense scrutiny in recent years. Increasing evidence underline the importance in early life of gut microbiome in the development of allergic diseases. There are a range of factors in the modern environment that may be associated with changes to both the gut microbiome and risk of FA, such as mode of delivery, antibiotic exposure, infant feeding practices, farming environment, and country of origin. Knowledge of the relationship between early life gut microbiome and allergic diseases may facilitate development of novel preventive and treatment strategies. Based on our current knowledge, there are no currently available approved therapies for food allergy. More studies are needed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of allergen-specific and allergen-nonspecific approaches, as well as combination approaches.

Keywords: Immune system; Immunotherapy; Intestinal microflora; Probiotics; Tolerance acquisition.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / therapeutic use
  • Allergens / immunology
  • Animals
  • Desensitization, Immunologic / methods
  • Food Hypersensitivity / etiology*
  • Food Hypersensitivity / therapy*
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome
  • Humans
  • Immune Tolerance
  • Probiotics


  • Adjuvants, Immunologic
  • Allergens