An exciting breakthrough in a classic immune system treatment!
Low Dose Allergen Therapy or Immunotherapy (LDA or LDI) is an innovative and sensible way of altering the body’s immune response to allergens. The therapy consists of a series of tiny, intradermal (into the skin) injections done every 8 or more weeks. The good news: Many people need as few as 2-5 injections to notice significant improvement in their seasonal and food allergies!
Low dose antigen or low dose immunotherapy (LDA or LDI) is a powerful method of calming or stabilizing the immune system regarding allergic reactions and autoimmune/inflammatory reactions. It was developed in the 1960s by a British immunologist, Len McEwen, and in Europe is called, “Enzyme Potentiated Desensitization” (EPD). It is different from standard immunotherapy in several ways.
First, extremely low doses of treatment antigens are used. Second, a large number of antigens can be given in one dose. Third, the treatment is given only once every two months initially and less frequently over time. Fourth, the mechanism of action is different from escalating dose allergy shots, which are thought to produce blocking antibodies against the allergen injected. With LDI, the mechanism of action is cultivation of a new population of T regulatory lymphocytes in the patient. These cells marshal or regulate the immune response. In the case of allergy or autoimmunity, the T regulatory cells are failing to restrain the immune system, which is attacking the self or harmless antigesn such as food or pollens. Sixth, these differences are accomplished by the use of a very potent enzyme found naturally in the body. This enzyme, called beta glucuronidase, is added to the antigen mix to activate the regulatory T cells. The last major difference is that LDI lends itself to the use of patient samples such as a throat culture or a stool ore even a skin biopsy to stimulate protective immunity.
Even more shockingly, the doses of LDA and LDI are so low (as low as one in 1 trillion) that it can be safely used even in people with anaphylaxis. LDA and LDI are much safer than conventional immunotherapy, and doses can be administered away from the clinic because of this.
This therapy has been used by physicians for a number of years (a few decades) in the USA and Europe, but historically, there were a number of very demanding rules to follow regarding dietary restrictions and avoidance of meds and supplements around the time of the injection. Also, the discomfort of the injection, which is quite significant, has discouraged its use (especially in children). However, recent research has explored some helpful modifications for LDA/LDI, which make it easy and painless to offer the therapy to everybody. These include using the sublingual dosing instead of subcutaneous injections and reserving the very restrictive dietary and supplement changes for only a select few.
In some cases, people need to follow all the strict rules to obtain maximum benefit, but in many cases this is just not necessary. Accordingly, we start the treatment with the simple fairly unrestricted method. We feel the greatest excitement about LDA/LDI is using this treatment for not only allergies and autoimmune diseases, but also for the autoimmunity in autism, PANDAS/PANS, Lyme disease, and inflammatory bowel issues. Additionally, it is a potent way to treat food allergies and intolerances and to eventually restore tolerance to some of the foods children and adults have to avoid. Fecal immunotherapy with LDI is somewhat analogous to fecal transplants, another up-and-coming treatment option, but much simpler.
What else can LDA be used for? This is a great question! Since LDA is a tool used to modulate one’s own immune system and vital force, the possibilities are endless! Please give Mt. Rainier Clinic a call to schedule a consult with Dr. Corbeille to discuss if LDA could be helpful for you at (253)853-8853.
Schedule an appointment today to discuss this elegant treatment option!
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