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Novel Approaches to Food Allergy

Welcome to the World Allergy Forum Symposium and Introduction to "Novel Approaches to Food Allergy"

Carlos E. Baena-Cagnani

June 30th, 2005

Dear Colleagues,

It is my pleasure to welcome you to Munich for the World Allergy Congress, the XIXth Congress of the World Allergy Organization, and to the 26th World Allergy Forum symposium, Novel Approaches to Food Allergy. The World Allergy Forum is the longest-running educational program of World Allergy Organization (WAO), and we are proud to bring you an excellent international faculty for today's symposium. WAO sincerely recognizes the unrestricted educational grant provided by Novartis which supports the World Allergy Forum program.

WAO is an alliance of allergy and clinical immunology societies, and currently represents over 70 Allergy and Clinical Immunology Societies around the world. Partnership with our member organizations is essential for the success of WAO and the worldwide development of Allergy as a specialty. I would like to thank warmly my co-chair Prof. Ulrich Wahn for his untiring work, both as a member of the World Allergy Forum Advisory Board, and as President of EAACI. I would also like to extend my thanks to the entire European Academy of Allergology and Clinical Immunology and the German Society for Allergology and Clinical Immunology for their collaboration in planning this Congress.

In addition to World Allergy Forum and the well-established GLORIA TM program, WAO is proud to announce the WAO Seminars and Conferences Program. This program will offer member societies the opportunity to apply for WAO Lectureships at member society meetings, to provide an international speaker to speak on a topic of the society's choice. The flexibility of WAO Seminars and Conferences is a perfect complement to the GLORIA program, which offers a selection of established educational modules on major topics in clinical allergy. Given the selection of WAO programs, I hope that your national society will wish to apply for a WAO program at your next meeting.

Lastly I would like to note the publication of Prevention of Allergy and Allergic Asthma. This work resulted from over 5 years' collaboration with the WHO, and is a tremendous WAO accomplishment. Prevention of Allergy and Asthma has been chosen as the theme of the first World Allergy Day, which was launched during this Congress and will be celebrated on 8th July 2005. World Allergy Day is an important initiative to increase the visibility of allergy amongst the public, medical professionals, and health care authorities, and I encourage you to show your support by arranging activities within your country.

To receive updates on WAO activities and membership benefits, register for WAO News and Notes, our monthly e-letter. Each e-letter offers a review of the latest allergy papers published in the major journals, news from our member societies, information about our Congresses and educational programs, and other items such as new allergy book reviews and synopses. To subscribe to our e-letter, please visit our Web site

Thank you for attending this World Allergy Forum symposium today and for your valuable contribution to the specialty of allergy.

With my best regards,

Prof. Carlos E. Baena-Cagnani
World Allergy Organization

Carlos E. Baena-Cagnani
Ulrich Wahn

Dear colleagues,

The area of food allergy has always been considered as one of the most complex and sometimes highly controversial areas of allergic disease. On one hand early diagnosis is of the highest importance, since infantile sensitization to food, and the subsequent development of adverse reactions, often represent the first clinical manifestation of the "atopic march". On the other hand, the precision of our diagnostic tools was often limited, which led to frustration in a large number of young and old patients reporting food allergies, that frequently could not be confirmed by the specialist.

Recent developments have led to very encouraging results. In some food allergy models the “decision points” predicting a 95% or 99% probability of anaphylactic reaction have been evaluated. Clinical procedures including the atopy patch test, as well as oral challenge tests, are currently performed following widely accepted guidelines. Remarkable progress has been made in the provision of recombinant allergens, which are obviously promising tools for the future and have the potential to lead to better sensitivity, specificity and reproducibility of in-vivo and in-vitro tests.

This year's World Allergy Forum includes some of the leading experts, who have contributed significantly during the last years to the complex field of food allergy diagnosis and treatment. It is our wish to present the most recent achievements and stimulate discussions with our experts upon challenges and the new developments we can anticipate in the near future.

Carlos E. Baena-Cagnani
Ulrich Wahn


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