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Peanuts 'could be made allergy-free'

Scientists have suggested that it could be possible to breed the allergens out of peanuts.

This would allow allergy-sufferers to eat the nuts again.

Speaking at a meeting of the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, an American researcher claimed to have studied the allergen-levels in around 900 varieties of peanut.

Soheila Maleki claimed that certain varieties demonstrated genetic mutations with very low or a total lack of major allergens.

By selecting and breeding these varieties, the team discovered that the second-generation peanut seeds had significantly reduced levels of the allergens.

Of her research, Ms Maleki said: "Through conventional breeding, we have shown it is possible to significantly reduce or eliminate more than one allergen.

"We hope this will ultimately lessen the development and the severity of the allergic response to peanuts."

The academy claims that between 0.8 and 1.5 per cent of people suffer from a nut allergy.

Children are thought to be particularly vulnerable to the problem.

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Peanuts 'could be made allergy-free'
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