DOMInO Trial Follow-up – Allergy at 6 years

This aim of the six year “allergy follow-up” study was to determine whether taking fish oil supplements during pregnancy containing the omega-3 fat, docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA), can reduce the development of allergies in children and how long these effects may last. The six year assessments involved 605 families who took part in the DO MInO Trial 1 & 3 year allergy follow up.

Investigators & Steering Committee

  • Professor Maria Makrides - Women’s & Children’s Health Research Institute (WCHRI) & South Australian Health & Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI)
  • A/Professor Michael Gold - Women’s & Children’s Hospital & The University of Adelaide
  • Professor Declan Kennedy - Women’s & Children’s Hospital & The University of Adelaide
  • Dr James Martin - Women’s & Children’s Hospital
  • Mr Thomas Sullivan - University of Adelaide
  • A/Professor Debbie Palmer - WCHRI & University of Western Australia
  • Ms Karen Best - WCHRI & University of Adelaide


Child Nutrition Research Centre

  • Women’s & Children’s Hospital, South Australia
  • Flinders Medical Centre, South Australia

SA Health GP Plus Clinics & SA Country Health Regional Health Services

Project Overview

Children who have a parent or a sibling who suffer from allergies are at higher risk of developing an allergy than children who have no family history. DHA is an omega-3 fat found in fish and fish oils and as well as being involved in the way the brain works and develops, it is thought to play a role in regulating immune responses. It has been suggested that supplementing the diet with DHA may alter the type of immune responses that lead to allergies and that the benefits may be greatest in the womb before allergic responses are established. At 1 year of age, we found that there were fewer children with atopic eczema and fewer children with a positive skin prick test to egg in the group whose mothers took fish oil supplements during pregnancy than those in the control group that took vegetable oil capsules. By examining children at 6 years of age, we are aiming to find out if the effects of fish oil supplementation during pregnancy are long standing or are only seen in early childhood.

For more detailed information about the six year allergy follow up, please see our DOMInO 6 Participant Information Sheet.

Our results (completed in 2015) found that DHA had no effect on whether six year old children developed eczema, wheezed or had hayfever. However, we found it did reduce their sensitivity to a common type of house dust mite.

The seven year followup of the trial  is neraing completion.


National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC)


If you would like further information about the DOMInO Trial or the 6 Allergy Follow-up, please contact one of our research team;



Listen to Professor Maria Makrides talk about allergy.

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SAHMRI is located on the traditional lands of the Kaurna Nation.

The SAHMRI community acknowledges and respects the traditional owners, the family clans who are the Kaurna Nation from the Adelaide Plains region of South Australia. We acknowledge the clans of the Kaurna Nation and the sacred knowledge they hold for their country. We pay our respects to the Kaurna Nation, their ancestors and the descendants of these living family clans today.