Eric BlairAugust 11th
2019

Itchy eyes, runny nose, uncontrollable sneezing - and all because you just wanted a few snuggles with the cat.

Well, all that could be a thing of the past, as scientists have reportedly developed a vaccine that could put an end to cat allergies. 

One out of every ten people suffer an allergic reaction after they’ve come into contact with our feline friends due to a type of protein, called Fel-d1, which is found in cats’ fur.

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The FEl-d1 protein then becomes attached to the cat's dander - which are the bits of dry skin that they leave behind on things. 

If or when the protein then gets into the system of anyone who is allergic to cats, it triggers a histamine response as the immune system incorrectly believes it’s under attack, causing all the symptoms you’d normally associate with an allergic reaction.

According to charity, Allergy UK, cat allergies affect roughly 50% of asthmatic children, meaning that those affected have to take anti-histamines or inhalers to relieve the symptoms.

For the last ten years, researchers have been working to create 'HypoCat' - a vaccine that triggers the cat's own immune system to attack and destroy the Fel-d1 protein - it’s the cat that gets the jab, not you!

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Published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, the study stated that the injection significantly reduced the amount of Fel-d1 protein produced.

Of 54 cats tested at University Hospital Zurich in Switzerland, all saw an increase in the defensive cells required to destroy the protein, meaning that in just three short years we could actually see a fully functioning vaccine! 

The researchers said: "Both humans and animals could profit from this treatment. Allergic cat owners would reduce their risk of developing chronic diseases, such as asthma.

"Their cats could stay in the households and not need to be relinquished to animal shelters.” 

So good news all round!

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