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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.
Study reveals lingering effects of Superstorm Sandy among New Jersey residents

Study reveals lingering effects of Superstorm Sandy among New Jersey residents

Superstorm Sandy continues to affect the lives of tens of thousands of New Jersey residents, in the form of unfinished repairs, disputed claims, and recurrent mold. These after-effects still linger for Sandy-impacted residents, and are associated with increased odds of residents experiencing mental health distress, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and depression. [More]
Endocrine Society recommends removal of tumor as first-line treatment for endogenous Cushing's syndrome

Endocrine Society recommends removal of tumor as first-line treatment for endogenous Cushing's syndrome

The Endocrine Society today issued a Clinical Practice Guideline (CPG) on strategies for treating Cushing's syndrome, a condition caused by overexposure to the hormone cortisol. [More]
Regeneron, Sanofi to jointly advance new immuno-oncology treatment options for cancer patients

Regeneron, Sanofi to jointly advance new immuno-oncology treatment options for cancer patients

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Sanofi have entered into a new global collaboration to discover, develop and commercialize new antibody cancer treatments in the emerging field of immuno-oncology. [More]
Lupin signs strategic asset purchase agreement with Temmler

Lupin signs strategic asset purchase agreement with Temmler

Pharma Major Lupin Limited today announced that it has entered into a strategic asset purchase agreement with TEMMLER PHARMA GMBH & CO. KG, a part of the Aenova Group, one of the world's largest pharmaceutical contract manufacturers, to acquire Temmler's specialty product portfolio subject to certain closing conditions. [More]
FDA approves Praluent (alirocumab) Injection for treatment of patients with high LDL cholesterol

FDA approves Praluent (alirocumab) Injection for treatment of patients with high LDL cholesterol

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Sanofi today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Praluent (alirocumab) Injection, the first FDA-approved treatment in a new class of drugs known as PCSK9 (proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9) inhibitors. [More]
EMA's CHMP recommends approval of Praluent (alirocumab) for use in patients with hypercholesterolemia

EMA's CHMP recommends approval of Praluent (alirocumab) for use in patients with hypercholesterolemia

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Sanofi today announced that the European Medicine Agency's Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use has adopted a positive opinion for the marketing authorization of Praluent (alirocumab), recommending its approval for use in certain adult patients with hypercholesterolemia. [More]
Lupin enters into definitive agreement to acquire GAVIS

Lupin enters into definitive agreement to acquire GAVIS

Pharma Major Lupin Limited has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire privately held GAVIS Pharmaceuticals LLC and Novel Laboratories Inc., subject to certain closing conditions, in a transaction valued at USD 880 million, cash free and debt free. [More]
Adherium partners with AstraZeneca to improve health outcomes for people with respiratory conditions

Adherium partners with AstraZeneca to improve health outcomes for people with respiratory conditions

New Zealand-based Adherium (NZ) Limited has entered a long term partnership with international pharmaceutical leader AstraZeneca in what the company believes is a world-first commercial arrangement combining digital health technology with blockbuster inhaler medications to improve health outcomes for patients with respiratory conditions. [More]
New UTMB study reveals mechanism central to pollen-induced allergies

New UTMB study reveals mechanism central to pollen-induced allergies

A new study from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston has uncovered a mechanism that is central to becoming allergic to ragweed pollen and developing allergic asthma or seasonal nasal allergies. The findings are currently available online in the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology. [More]
New issue of FMCH Journal examines evidence-based population health and patient care

New issue of FMCH Journal examines evidence-based population health and patient care

Evidence-Based Approaches to Population Health and Family Practice is the theme of the new issue of Family Medicine and Community Health, an international peer reviewed medical journal with editorial offices in China and the U.S. The Summer 2015 issue includes six original research articles, two educational research articles and two systematic reviews addressing various topics in evidence based population health and patient care. [More]
UChicago, Argonne National Laboratory and USF to jointly study gut microbiomes of premature infants

UChicago, Argonne National Laboratory and USF to jointly study gut microbiomes of premature infants

Scientists have suspected that this initial disruption is linked to health problems down the road—things like autism, asthma, food allergies and autoimmune diseases—but so far they only have circumstantial evidence based on case studies. [More]
Sulfur dioxide air pollutant can cause adverse effects in asthmatics

Sulfur dioxide air pollutant can cause adverse effects in asthmatics

Emissions of the air pollutant sulfur dioxide have been dramatically decreased during the past 30 years but for some people even a little inhaled sulfur dioxide may still be too much. [More]
UVA Children's Hospital finds potential cause of child paralysis outbreak

UVA Children's Hospital finds potential cause of child paralysis outbreak

A mysterious outbreak of child paralysis cases previously linked to enterovirus D68 may instead have another cause, doctors at the University of Virginia Children's Hospital are cautioning after determining that a stricken child appeared to be suffering from a different virus. [More]
Air pollution from wildfires may heighten risk of heart-related incidents

Air pollution from wildfires may heighten risk of heart-related incidents

Air pollution from wildfires may increase risk of cardiac arrests, and other sudden acute heart problems, researchers have found. [More]
Emory University immunologists identify long-lived antibody-producing cells in bone marrow

Emory University immunologists identify long-lived antibody-producing cells in bone marrow

Immunologists from Emory University have identified a distinct set of long-lived antibody-producing cells in the human bone marrow that function as an immune archive. [More]
AnaptysBio announces completion of oversubscribed $40MM Series D financing round

AnaptysBio announces completion of oversubscribed $40MM Series D financing round

AnaptysBio, Inc., a leader in the discovery and development of therapeutic antibodies for inflammation and immuno-oncology, today announced the completion of an oversubscribed $40MM Series D financing round. [More]
Study shows possibility of using embryonic stem cells to repair damaged lung tissue

Study shows possibility of using embryonic stem cells to repair damaged lung tissue

Collectively, such diseases of the airways as emphysema, bronchitis, asthma and cystic fibrosis are the second leading cause of death worldwide. More than 35 million Americans alone suffer from chronic respiratory disease. Weizmann Institute scientists have now proposed a new direction that could, in the future, lead to the development of a method for alleviating some of their suffering. [More]
COPD risk may occur during childhood and adolescence

COPD risk may occur during childhood and adolescence

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is one of most common causes of death in the world today - active smoking accounting for approx. 85% of all cases. Yet ground-breaking research from the University of Copenhagen indicates that accelerated decline of lung function is not a prerequisite for COPD. [More]
SUNY Downstate Medical Center researchers identify ALPIM syndrome as new spectrum disorder

SUNY Downstate Medical Center researchers identify ALPIM syndrome as new spectrum disorder

The relationship between mental and physical health is well established. But when mental and physical illnesses co-occur, patients' accounts of physical illness are sometimes arbitrarily discredited or dismissed by physicians. [More]
Phase 3 ODYSSEY JAPAN trial of Praluent injection meets primary endpoint

Phase 3 ODYSSEY JAPAN trial of Praluent injection meets primary endpoint

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Sanofi today announced that the Phase 3 ODYSSEY JAPAN trial of the investigational therapy Praluent® (alirocumab) Injection met its primary endpoint. [More]
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