1. Oktober 2012  

New therapeutic approaches to allergic inflammation

Asthma und allergies affect around a billion people and are among the most common chronic illnesses worldwide, ,becoming more and more widespread in developing countries. There is a rising mortality rate, especially from food-related anaphylaxis and severe asthma. The treatment options currently available are relatively safe and effective in terms of symptom control, but they do not alter the chronic course of the disease.

 

Unfortunately, there are not yet any established preventive therapies and there is considerable need for improved control of severe asthma and for curative treatments. Major advances in our understanding of mechanisms of immune regulation of allergies, asthma, autoimmune diseases, cancers, organ transplantations and chronic infections have led to various new therapeutic approaches. The use of these therapies against allergies and asthma might signify a new future for treatment modalities.

In research area D, under the direction of Prof. Akdis, two major treatment options for asthma and allergies are currently being developed by CK-CARE and new advances in these two areas are discussed in the article. The first approach, allergen-specific immunotherapy, is intended to induce a certain immune tolerance and has a positive long-term disease-modifying effect. By contrast, the second approach using biomodulators aims to reduce the immune system attacks by blocking the cytokines, chemokines and cell surface molecules that play a role in the pathophysiology of allergies and asthma. It is now expected that a combination of these two approaches will address the clinical needs of these medical conditions.

The full article can be obtained via the following link.