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Stephen J. Teach, MD, MPH, part of landmark study on pediatric asthma
Date:3/16/2011

omalizumab to NIH guidelines-based asthma therapy reduced the number of days that participants experienced any asthma-related symptoms. Another goal was to find out if the addition of omalizumab could also reduce the number of severe asthma attacks. Half of the participants were assigned at random to receive omalizumab, and the other half a placebo.

"The spike in asthma attacks in the fall, which is associated with colds and other viral airway infections, disappeared in the kids in the omalizumab group," said Dr. Busse. "Because the drug specifically targets IgE, which is the antibody responsible for allergies, our observations show the possible interplay between allergies, respiratory viruses and IgE in provoking asthma attacks."

Seasonal asthma attacks can cause children and teens to miss school, particularly in the fall and spring. Additionally, many hospital emergency departments see a spike in visits with severe seasonal asthma flare ups.

"If the ICAC now collaborates in refining indications for use of this drug, we may find the optimal way to use this therapy to reduce emergency department visits and to improve these kids' quality of life," said Dr. Teach. "This is what we mean by translational research we moved this drug from the laboratory to the patients, found important impacts on kids' lives, and now will work further to develop the best applications. The next step for the ICAC is to focus more closely on the role of omalizumab in reducing fall exacerbations of asthma."


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Contact: Paula Darte
pdarte@cnmc.org
202-821-6357
Children's National Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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