AMUK Healthy Living Blog

Dr Bill Frankland the “grandfather of allergy” was interviewed on Radio 4 Desert Island Discs on Sunday 9th September and it was fascinating to listen to this 103 year old doctor.  He still keeps himself up to date with all the medical journals and still treats some long standing patients!  What an extraordinary man.

Amazingly he worked with Alexander Fleming as his Registrar, as well as predicting the increased levels of allergy to penicillin.  We can thank him for persuading the media to include the introduction of the pollen count in weather forecasts.

He championed the view that an allergic reaction is due to a malfunctioning immune system. He experimented on himself, almost with fatal consequences, with a South American insect allowing it to feast on his blood so he could document his reaction.  Through this he and his colleagues opened up the possibility of immunotherapy as a new treatment for allergy sufferers, by using small doses of the allergen to retrain the immune system.

Dr Frankland says “Allergy is immunity gone wrong”.    He points out that small does of potential allergen seem to stop potential problems in their tracks.

This is why we use and find very beneficial, the two forms of immunotherapy we use at our clinics.  Interestingly, the EPD (Enzyme Potentiated Desensitisation) method we use was also discovered in the same hospital, St. Mary’s in London, by Dr Len McEwen where Dr Frankland was working.


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