Maternal allergen exposure during pregnancy and childhood allergy: changing UK Public Health policy

Impact

Description of impact

Research by the University of Aberdeen has helped deliver a turnaround in the medical advice given to pregnant women in the UK regarding the consumption of peanuts. Previous Department of Health advice was for pregnant women with a personal or family history of allergic disease to avoid eating peanuts in order to prevent allergy in their offspring. However, the Aberdeen research into neonatal immune responses demonstrated that laboratory responses of cord blood mononuclear cells exposed to allergens in vitro were unrelated to antenatal allergen exposure. The findings and resulting change in health advice attracted wide international attention.

Therefore this research has had impact in: health and welfare by changing dietary guidelines, increasing public awareness of a health risk public behaviour and influencing decisions and care practices by a health service.
Impact statusOpen