What is it about?
Asthma is a very common respiratory disease, which leads to shortness of breath, chest tightness, coughing, wheezing, and in some severe cases, death. The cause of many of the symptoms of asthma is the narrowing of the airways caused by inappropriate contraction of the muscle that surrounds the air tubes. As the airway narrows in asthma, it folds and mechanical forces are generated within the airways. Until recently these mechanical forces were thought only to cause symptoms of asthma, however it has now been shown that they actually drive the disease, making asthma more severe and difficult to treat.
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Why is it important?
The mechanical forces produced in the airway during airway narrowing lead to increased mucus production, increased size and strength of the airway muscles and may contribute to worse viral infections and the ineffectiveness of asthma drugs in some people. Targeting airway narrowing, or the biological pathways that are activated by it, may provide opportunities to develop new drugs for asthma.
Read the Original
This page is a summary of: Airway mechanical compression: its role in asthma pathogenesis and progression, European Respiratory Review, August 2020, European Respiratory Society (ERS), DOI: 10.1183/16000617.0123-2019.
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