Canada approves Merck grass allergy immunotherapy

February 3, 2014 by The Associated Press

Merck & Co. says it's won its first approval for its new immunotherapy tablet for grass allergies, from regulators in Canada.

The drug, called Grastek, gradually reduced to grass pollen, by desensitizing the immune system to the substance triggering the allergic reaction. Most treatments just temporarily relieve sneezing, itching and other symptoms.

The world's third-biggest drugmaker, based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., has partnered with ALK-Abello to market it in North America. ALK-Abello sells it in Europe as Grazas.

In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration is weighing approval of both Grastek and an immunotherapy tablet for ragweed allergies. The tablets dissolve under the tongue and are taken daily for a year or so.

They could become an alternative to months of uncomfortable allergy shots.

Explore further: Merck: FDA reviewing tablet to eliminate allergy

Related Stories

Merck: FDA reviewing tablet to eliminate allergy

March 27, 2013

Drugmaker Merck & Co. says federal regulators are reviewing its application to sell a new type of treatment for grass pollen allergy that gradually reduces allergy symptoms over time, rather than just temporarily relieving ...

Merck says FDA reviewing its ragweed allergy therapy

May 8, 2013

Drugmaker Merck & Co. says the Food and Drug Administration is reviewing its second application to sell a new type of allergy treatment meant to gradually reduce allergic reactions over time, rather than just relieving sneezing, ...

Recommended for you

Team finds early inflammatory response paralyzes T cells

August 18, 2015

In a discovery that is likely to rewrite immunology text books, researchers at UC Davis have found that early exposure to inflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin 2, can "paralyze" CD4 T cells, immune components that help ...

SIV shrugs off antibodies in vaccinated monkeys

August 11, 2015

New research on monkeys vaccinated against HIV's relative SIV calls into question an idea that has driven AIDS vaccine work for years. The assumption: a protective vaccine only needs to stimulate moderate levels of antibodies ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.