London: Researchers are to trial Botox to treat hay fever after early tests showed promising results. Under the trial, a Botox gel will be applied to the nose to hopefully give hay fever sufferers relief from sneezing, itchy eyes and runny noses for up to three months.

It is hoped that the botulinum toxin will affect the nerves in the nose and potentially block some of the chemicals released by the nerve endings which play a large role in causing hay fever symptoms.

Australian scientists have re-engineered the Botox molecule to be able to penetrate through the skin but also through the lining of the nose in a bid to treat the allergy.

Philip Bardin, a professor at the Monash Medical Centre, said that Botox was already widely used in medicine to reduce spasms in muscles following strokes and in treating cerebral palsy. "This is very new way to use an old medication," a daily quoted him as saying.

Botox, which makes muscles relax, is a purified form of a nerve poison and is produced by bacteria that cause a disease which paralyses muscles. 70 people will be recruited for the new study following a preliminary trial that suggested the drug provided relief.


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