Research from the University of Queensland finds that different types of asthma respond differently to a new experimental treatment.
School of Biomedical Sciences asthma expert Associate Professor Simon Phipps said two common asthma types were involved in the tests.
“Laboratory tests using mice showed that exposure to house dust mite allergens generated eosinophilic asthma, which affects half of all asthmatics,” he said.
“Exposure to cockroach extract, however, generated an inflammatory response typical of neutrophilic asthma, commonly found in severe asthmatics.”
Despite the different responses caused by the allergens, Associate Professor Phipps said current treatment options for all types of asthma were the same.
“Steroids are the mainstay of all asthma treatment and eosinophilic asthma responds well to this treatment,” he said.
“And while steroids are less effective against neutrophilic inflammation, they are currently the best treatment option available.”
Associate Professor Phipps and his research team collaborated on the laboratory tests with asthma geneticist Dr Manuel Ferreira from the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute.