A PIONEERING new study looking into how people with peanut allergies can manage their condition is being led by a scientist from Trafford.

Professor Clare Mills, from the University of Manchester, will conduct research to identify how factors like exercise and stress may change how much peanut can cause an allergic reaction.

The research is being carried out in partnership with Cambridge University Hospitals and Imperial College.

Altrincham resident Professor Mills, who is also currently leading the world’s biggest study into food allergies, said: “Peanut allergies appear to have increased in the UK over the last 15 years and this research will play an important part in helping to make life easier for allergy sufferers.”

Someone that knows all too well how difficult it is to live with a peanut allergy is Michelle Byrne, who runs the Manchester Allergy Support Group.

Michelle, from Urmston, said people have different levels of sensitivity. She said: “I once had a reaction to the vapours from an open jar of peanut butter. The sister of a friend of mine died while on an airplane when someone opened a bag of food with nuts in.”

The results of the study will help improve ‘may contain traces of nuts’ type labelling, making it easier for consumers to decide which foods are safe to eat.

Michelle said: “You see those labels on foods you think are safe, like apple juice and salads.

“You get into a habit of eating foods you have checked and know are safe but sometimes even those products change. I once ate a chocolate bar I bought regularly and didn’t realise the label had changed.”

The Manchester Allergy Support Group meets on the first Monday of every month at St John’s Church, Irlam Road, Flixton M41 6AP.

On July 1 Professor Mills will visit the group to discuss her research.