Scientists say they’ve developed vaccine to eliminate allergies to cats

U.S. & World

(CNN) – Cat lovers who are allergic to furry felines may soon have something to celebrate.

A Swiss pharmaceutical company has developed a vaccine, but it’s not for people.

It’s for the cats.

According to research published in the “Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology,” the vaccine works by suppressing a glycoprotein that cats produce called Fel d 1, which causes allergies in humans.

The company, Hypopet, said initial trials have shown that the vaccine is well tolerated by cats, and they were able to build up strong, lasting antibodies.

Ten percent of people are allergic to cats — about twice as many as are allergic to dogs.

While there are allergy shots for humans out there, they mainly help control the symptoms. The other option, of course, is avoidance.

Hypopet said they are hoping that when this vaccine finally becomes available, families will no longer have to part with their pets because of allergies.

According to the Shelter Animals Count national database, almost 1.5 million cats entered U.S. shelters in 2018. However, the actual number is thought to be higher since only 54% of counties participate in the database.

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