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Asthma is a common inflammatory disease affecting the airways that leads to shortness of breath, coughing and wheezing. Symptoms range from mild to severe but are generally manageable with appropriate treatment.

When asthmatics come into contact with something that irritates their lungs, three main changes occur that prevent air from moving easily through the airways. The bands of muscle surrounding the airways tighten and narrow the airway (bronchospasm), the lining of the airways inflame, and the cells that line the airways produce more mucus. This bronchospasm, inflammation, and mucus production lead to wheezing, coughing and difficulty in breathing.

An asthma “attack” refers to when the onset of symptoms is severe. In rare cases, an asthma attack can be life threatening and hospitalization may be required to provide emergency treatment.
The exact cause of asthma is not yet clear, but examples of factors that are known to trigger the condition include allergens such as house dust mites or pollen, cigarette smoke, exercise, chest infections, and exposure to cold air.

Asthma cannot be cured but it can be controlled. One of the most important parts of asthma control is identifying asthma triggers so they can be avoided wherever possible. Medications that may be used include anti-inflammatories to reduce swelling and mucus production and bronchodilators to relax the muscles that tighten and narrow the airways.
Concordia signs collaboration agreement with Orphan Canada for PHOTOFRIN

Concordia signs collaboration agreement with Orphan Canada for PHOTOFRIN

Concordia Healthcare Corp., a diverse healthcare company focused on legacy pharmaceutical products, orphan drugs, and medical devices for the diabetic population, today announced that its subsidiary, Pinnacle Biologics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical research and development company specializing in rare diseases, has signed a collaboration agreement for PHOTOFRIN® with Orphan Canada, a Toronto-based specialty pharmaceutical company that in‐licenses therapies for rare disorders and specialty medicines within Canada. Under the agreement, Pinnacle and Orphan Canada will partner to support the continued supply of Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) using PHOTOFRIN in Canada. [More]
Damp and mould in homes pose significant health risk to people with asthma

Damp and mould in homes pose significant health risk to people with asthma

Damp and mould in homes could pose a significant health risk to people with asthma according to a new study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. [More]
Peer groups, clinicians play critical role in development of effective breastfeeding programs

Peer groups, clinicians play critical role in development of effective breastfeeding programs

The support of peer groups and clinicians is critical to the development of effective breastfeeding programs, according to recent University of Georgia research. [More]
Suggestions for successful breast feeding from nurse midwifery program

Suggestions for successful breast feeding from nurse midwifery program

Most new moms know the benefits of breast feeding. For babies, it can lower the risk of developing asthma, diabetes, and leukemia. For moms, it reduces the risk of breast cancer. But many women still don't know where to turn for help when breast feeding doesn't go as smoothly as they imagined it would. [More]
High dew point triggers air quality alert for dangerous levels of mold in the Midwest

High dew point triggers air quality alert for dangerous levels of mold in the Midwest

The heavy rains, hot temperatures and high dew point have triggered an air quality alert for dangerous levels of mold in the Midwest. "The interior mold exposure for homes experiencing flooding or water seepage will be even more toxic," warns Joseph Leija, MD, allergist who performs the Gottlieb Allergy Count, the official daily allergy count for the Midwest. [More]
EVERYAWARE develops AirProbe and Widenoise apps to increase awareness of environment

EVERYAWARE develops AirProbe and Widenoise apps to increase awareness of environment

Air and noise pollution are among the most insidious threats to our health. But what if we could monitor both from our smartphones? The AirProbe and Widenoise apps, developed by an EU-funded research project called EVERYAWARE, have made this possible. [More]
Sanofi, Regeneron present alirocumab Phase 3 trial results at ESC Congress 2014

Sanofi, Regeneron present alirocumab Phase 3 trial results at ESC Congress 2014

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Sanofi today announced that details from four pivotal trials in the alirocumab ODYSSEY clinical program will be presented on Sunday, August 31, during a Hot Line session at ESC Congress 2014 in Barcelona, Spain, the world's largest cardiology meeting. [More]
Greater Toronto Area continues to violate Canada-wide standards for ozone air pollution

Greater Toronto Area continues to violate Canada-wide standards for ozone air pollution

A new study shows that while the Greater Toronto Area has significantly reduced some of the toxins that contribute to smog, the city continues to violate the Canada-wide standards for ozone air pollution. [More]
Young people with chronic illnesses face uncertainty when transitioning from pediatric to adult care

Young people with chronic illnesses face uncertainty when transitioning from pediatric to adult care

Young people with chronic illnesses face uncertainty when their care is transferred from pediatrics to adult-oriented health professionals. A new study in the Journal of Adolescent Health has found that one in five such young adults said the transfer of their care was unsatisfactory. [More]
Highmark Foundation grants $311,950 to support healthy programs in Western Pennsylvania schools

Highmark Foundation grants $311,950 to support healthy programs in Western Pennsylvania schools

The Highmark Foundation has awarded schools in Western Pennsylvania with $311,950 in "Creating a Healthy School Environment" grants for innovative, healthy programs that begin in September when local students head back to schools. [More]

Boehringer Ingelheim announces FDA acceptance of NDA filing for tiotropium and olodaterol FDC

Boehringer Ingelheim today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration accepted for review the New Drug Application (NDA) for the fixed-dose combination (FDC) of tiotropium and olodaterol delivered via the Respimat inhaler for the proposed indication of long-term, once-daily maintenance treatment of airflow obstruction in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), including chronic bronchitis and/or emphysema. [More]
FDA approves GlaxoSmithKline’s Arnuity Ellipta for treatment of asthma

FDA approves GlaxoSmithKline’s Arnuity Ellipta for treatment of asthma

GlaxoSmithKline plc today announced that the FDA has approved Arnuity™ Ellipta® (fluticasone furoate inhalation powder), a once-daily inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) medicine for maintenance treatment of asthma as prophylactic therapy in patients aged 12 years and older. Arnuity is not indicated for relief of acute bronchospasm. [More]
Study: Patients with 2 or more ED visits in one year account for disproportionate costs

Study: Patients with 2 or more ED visits in one year account for disproportionate costs

Almost one-third of acute heart failure syndrome patients seen in hospital emergency departments (EDs) in Florida and California during 2010 had ED visits during the following year, findings that suggest a lack of appropriate outpatient care. [More]
Glenmark announces discovery and initiation of IND enabling studies of innovative bispecific antibody

Glenmark announces discovery and initiation of IND enabling studies of innovative bispecific antibody

Glenmark Pharmaceuticals S.A. (GPSA), a wholly owned subsidiary of Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Limited India (GPL), announces the discovery and initiation of IND enabling studies of a novel clinical development candidate, GBR 1302, a HER2xCD3 bispecific antibody. [More]
VCU receives federal grant totaling $6.9 million to study genetics of alcohol abuse

VCU receives federal grant totaling $6.9 million to study genetics of alcohol abuse

Virginia Commonwealth University has received a federal grant totaling $6.9 million to study the genetics of alcohol abuse and alcoholism - work that may lead to further advances in its treatment, control and prevention. [More]
Decision Resources expands disease-level coverage of Treatment Algorithms Insight Series

Decision Resources expands disease-level coverage of Treatment Algorithms Insight Series

Decision Resources has expanded its disease-level coverage of the Treatment Algorithms Insight Series, which examines U.S. physicians' prescribing behavior, to provide a quantitative analysis of an agent's penetration into each line of therapy. [More]
ITS develops new T cell vaccine to protect humans from seasonal and pandemic influenza A

ITS develops new T cell vaccine to protect humans from seasonal and pandemic influenza A

Immune Targeting Systems, specializing in the development of novel T cell immune therapies, has been developing an exciting new T cell vaccine (FlunisynTM) designed to protect humans from all strains of seasonal and pandemic influenza A. [More]

GPs review how well patient asthma is controlled

A new Clinical e-Audit from NPS MedicineWise has been released that will help GPs review just how well patient asthma is controlled. [More]
UI scientists discover that CF mucus abnormality is present at birth

UI scientists discover that CF mucus abnormality is present at birth

Mucus is key to keeping our lungs clean and clear of bacteria, viruses, and other foreign particles that can cause infection and inflammation. When we inhale microbes and dust, they are trapped in the mucus and then swept up and out of the lungs via a process called mucociliary transport. [More]
UH Case Medical Center offers new FDA-approved treatment for obstructive sleep apnea

UH Case Medical Center offers new FDA-approved treatment for obstructive sleep apnea

University Hospitals Case Medical Center is the first in Ohio and among the first in the United States to begin offering a new FDA-approved treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). [More]