Pets Protect Tots From Asthma, Study Says
Posted by The Baby News
Your pooch: Watchdog, beloved bestie, and now possibly childhood health-benefit provider? Preliminary new findings from the University of California-Davis suggest that when young humans share living space with a dog, the household dust might help ward off asthma.
The researchers exposed mice to dust from homes that have dogs, and then to a specific virus common virus in infants that's linked to a high risk of developing asthma in childhood. The exposed mice did not develop the symptoms of the virus, known as RSV or respiratory syncytial virus. What's more, the gastrointestinal bacteria in the exposed mice was altered.
Based on these findings, the study team believes that exposure to dust that contains the dog sheddings might actually alter the immune system, creating an immunity to the asthma-linked virus. The researchers plan to explore which microbe species provided by the presence of a dog is responsible for protection against RSV. -Katie Quirk
What's your experience with this? Do you have a dog? Have any of your children been diagnosed with asthma, or are they breathing easy?
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