Respiratory allergies in childhood: Recent advances and future challenges

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The burden of allergic airway diseases still represents a major health problem in childhood. Despite many different options are currently available for the diagnostic work-up and management, the overall disease control in terms of impact on quality of life, morbidity and mortality, is not yet satisfactory. The extreme variability of individual risk factors and severity determinants may account for it. On the other side, the knowledge of the multifaceted allergy background could pave the way to primary prevention, early intervention and disease course modification. In fact, most of current research is focusing on the identification of biological and clinical predictive markers of allergy and asthma onset. This review aims at summarizing the latest achievements concerning the complex inter-relation between genetic predisposition and environmental factors, and their impact on prevention strategies and early identification of at risk subjects. An update on the diagnostic and monitoring tools as well as an insight into the newest treatments options is also provided.

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