Your sneezing and watery eyes, and mild to severe cases of anaphylactic shock, may soon be at an end. As much as 1 in every 10 humans has an allergy to cats, which makes this breakthrough perfectly timed. A Swiss company called HypoPet has come up with a brilliant way to stop cats from causing people to be so allergic to them. They have tackled a number of maladies that affect our fury companions, in the form of vaccines, instead of steroids or pills, they are focusing on trying to solve the problem instead of reducing the symptoms.
What causes most people to have allergic reactions to cats? Within cat dandruff is a protein called the Fel d 1, which is the major feline allergen. What causes the reaction is that when someone with the allergy is near cat dandruff, which almost always has these proteins attached, it triggers an immune response in the body that they are attacking.
HypoCat basically causes cats systems to destroy the allergy-causing protein, which minimizes the ability of cats to cause an allergic response. This would allow families who discover one of them has a cat allergy, to keep the cat, and simply get it vaccinated against the protein. This would also put a great deal of relief on shelters, who have said that the relinquishing of cats due to allergy issues is a huge problem at the moment.
4 separate studies conducted on the effectiveness of the vaccine on a total of 54 cats. It was conducted at a Swiss hospital, resulted in all of the cats going on to produce the antibodies that destroy the protein. Though it will still take at least 3 years to come to market, the company isn't limiting themselves to curing cat allergies. The tests had no overt adverse effects on the cats that were part of the study, and they tolerated it well.
The company is taking on a wide variety of animal-related issues, including dog allergies with their HypoDog, feline and canine dermatitis, pain in both pets as well as for horses, inflammation, feline Diabetes, and even an oncology treatment for dogs. We may have to wait a while before seeing many of these breakthroughs, but its good to know at least someone is taking care of it.
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