The Purina Institute recently published research in Immunity, Inflammation and Disease concerning a dietary formulation for cats that reduces allergic reactions in people. As many pet lovers suffer from cat allergies, this has the potential to be a major breakthrough.
The source of allergic reactions to cats in 95% of people is the Fel d1 protein that is found in the saliva and sebaceous glands of felines. The protein is produced by all cats; sex, breed, long or short hair makes no difference. When cats groom, Fel d1 is distributed on the fur and skin. From there, it is spread into the environment.
Purina has found a method to neutralize the offending protein utilizing IgY, an anti-Fel d1 antibody. An egg product containing IgY is incorporated into the cat’s diet. 97% of cats fed this diet had decreased levels of Fel d1 on their hair and skin. After 21 days, the problem protein was reduced by 47%. IgY is active in the cat’s mouth, neutralizing the Fel d1 locally in the saliva.
Many people that have cats are allergic to them. More people would have cats for pets if allergies were not an issue.