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Allergy Therapeutics is beginning UK trials of an over-the-counter supplement that it claims helps calm the immune system and ease allergy symptoms. The tests will cover a range of triggers including grass pollen, dust mites, cats and dogs.
The formulation is based on science that suggests people who live on or very near dairy cattle farms have a lower incidence of allergies and asthma than those who do not.
Dust containing proteins from cows and milk are inhaled and help to deliver iron and zinc to the immune system in a particular way.
Manuel Llobet, chief executive of Allergy Therapeutics, said: “You can’t just take any iron tablet. It has to be formatted in a very particular way to deliver into the immune system to have the farmyard effect.”
Allergy Therapeutics bought the rights to the supplement last year and is already selling it in Germany and Austria.
Mr Llobet said: “We want to be able to show data, that the medication works, before our launch in Britain.”
Allergy Therapeutics was spun out of Glaxo, the precursor to GSK, in 1999, through a management buyout and in 2004 was floated on Aim.
It is tightly held by three main shareholders: Abbott Laboratories, a South American family fund and the Hong Kong fund ZQ Capital.