Severe Asthma: Have We Made Progress?

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Tremendous efforts have been invested in research to (1) discover risk factors, biomarkers, and clinical characteristics; (2) understand the pathophysiology and treatment response variability in severe asthma; and (3) design new therapies. However, to combat severe asthma, many questions concerning the pathogenesis of severe asthma, including its natural history, genetic and environmental risk factors, and disease mechanisms, must be answered. In this article we highlight some of the major discoveries concerning the pathogenesis of severe asthma and its therapeutic development. We conclude that discoveries on numerous fronts of severe asthma, from disease heterogeneity, features of airway remodeling, cytokine mediators and signaling pathways underlying disease pathogenesis, disease mechanisms, potential biomarkers, to new therapeutic targets, demonstrate that progress has been made in understanding and developing more effective treatments for this difficult-to-treat disease.

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