Penicillin happens to be one of the most common causes of drug allergies. Researchers have now found a genetic link to the sensitivity. According to the article, the HLA-B gene may be the area where there is genetic variation that causes this allergy. Many studies have been done with the HLA gene, which shows when individuals have a HLA variant they can have higher allergic drug reactions. The researchers used genetic search tools and found a specific spot on chromosome 6 on a variant called HLA-B*55:01. This cannot be confirmed yet, since they checked the results against small databases and found no similar connection. I believe this is a step in the right direction. I personally know people with penicillin allergies, and if we can find the genetic link, then in the future we can isolate it and change it so people can use penicillin when they have bacterial infections. We are just at the beginning of our journey with understanding and changing genes, so I believe this is a good step, but much more can be done. Penicillin is a very useful antibiotic so if we can find a way to make everyone able to use it, it may help a lot of people.
This is a very interesting article. I'm myself allergic to Penicillin, as I go very bad reactions from it when taking it for Strep. My mother is also allergic to the drug too, so that shows the genetics between the genes of the medicine. It'll be nice if someday the scientists are able to isolate the gene that causes the allergy, so people like me can take the strongest antibiotic when needed.ReplyDelete