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Asthma and allergy research studies

We do a lot of research for both adult and children’s allergies and our teams have an international reputation for research into asthma and allergy. Both groups have close ties with King’s College London.

Trials looking for volunteers

We are currently looking for volunteers to take part in the following studies.

  • Asthma and the common cold

    This study will investigate whether a promising new class of drugs can prevent or lessen the worsening of symptoms following infection with the common cold.

    Researchers are recruiting patients with asthma and will treat them with either the study’s test drug, called OC459, or a placebo (a ‘dummy pill’) before infecting them with the common cold virus. Participants will then be monitored closely for signs and symptoms of worsening asthma.

    This trial will involve the use of an unlicensed drug called OC459. It has been chosen by the researchers because it has an excellent safety record: 750 subjects have taken OC459, including over 450 subjects with asthma, with no drug-specific side effects noted.

    Find out more about this asthma and the common cold trial.

  • EAT – investigating food intolerances

    Children’s allergy specialists at Evelina London Children's Hospital are conducting the first large-scale study investigating the impact of when allergenic foods are introduced to babies’ diets.

    During the study, allergenic foods are introduced to the 3-6 month old babies’ diets while they are still being breastfed. The researchers are investigating whether this will reduce the number who will develop food allergies by the time they are three years old.

    The results may help prevent children in the future from developing food allergies and possibly other allergic diseases, such as asthma, eczema and hay fever.

    You can find out more on the EAT study website.  

Previous studies

Read about past studies. Please note we are no longer recruiting volunteers for these trials.

  • EXHALE – pollution, vitamin D and lung health

    The Exploration of Health and Lungs in the Environment (EXHALE) programme is investigating links between air pollution, vitamin D deficiency, and their impact on the respiratory (lung) health of children in south east London. Children attending schools located close to main roads are being studied to see if reducing traffic emissions has any effect on their health, compared with pollution and respiratory health data collected before the introduction of the Low Emission Zone.

    This study is being done by researchers and clinicians from our NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, together with MRC-Asthma UK Centre in Allergic Mechanisms of Asthma at King’s College London, and Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry.

    The researchers believe these children are at high risk from the negative effects of pollution on respiratory health.

    This research will inform future traffic emissions policy.

    Find out more about the EXHALE study.

  • GAP study – Grazax Asthma Prevention study

    We are one of over 100 European centres investigating whether desensitisation to grass pollen for hay fever can help prevent the development of asthma. Hundreds of children aged 5-11 with significant hay fever, who do not have asthma, have been recruited to either receive grass pollen desensitisation tablets or a placebo. They are being followed up for five years to see how many of them develop asthma and if the desensitisation treatment reduced the risk.

  • PRESTO study

    This is a randomised controlled trial comparing a pre/probiotic containing amino acid formula (AAF) with the standard AAF for 12 months with a two year follow-up. The primary objective of the study is to evaluate development of oral tolerance to cow’s milk in infants with IgE mediated CMA on the control or test AAF. Secondary measures aim to evaluate the effects on maturation of the GI immune system.

  • ASSIGN study

    A randomised, double-blind, controlled study to assess the effect of an amino acid based formula with a synbiotic blend on gut microbiota and stool characteristics in infants with suspected gastrointestinal non-IgE mediated cow’s milk allergy. This study is randomising children with delayed type milk allergy to receive an amino acid formula with or without added friendly bacteria (probiotics). The effect of this on the bacterial composition of faecal samples (counts of Bifidobacteria by using fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH)) will be compared.
  • ADAPT – treating severe eczema in children

    The Atopic Dermatitis Anti-IgE Paediatric Trial (ADAPT) is investigating the use of anti-IgE (Xolair / omalizumab), in children with severe eczema.

    Children with severe eczema will be treated for six months with anti-IgE, to assess its effect. The results of the study may identify a new treatment for children with severe eczema, which is difficult to treat.

    More information can be found on the ADAPT website.

  • Pronuts study

    This study is recruiting children who have had an allergic reaction to peanut, tree-nut or sesame seed allergy after eating one of these foods, in order to find out the true rate of co-existent peanut, tree and sesame seed allergy.


    This study is assessing the safety of the new nasal influenza vaccine in children with egg allergy.

Patient services

Take part in a clinical trial

Find out how you can take part in a clinical trial at Guy’s and St Thomas’ and what is involved.