A study reveals that increases in systemic inflammation predict more frequent exacerbations in patients with asthma and airway Interluekin-1? in patients with COPD.

Researchers performed a prospective cohort study on 152 participants with asthma and COPD to investigate airway innate immune activation and systemic inflammation as predictors of exacerbations in patients with asthma and COPD, according to a Healio news report.

Participants attended a baseline visit to evaluate demographics such as medical history and smoking status. The research team also collected data regarding ER visits, respiratory hospitalizations, and unscheduled primary care doctor visits. Participants in the study had sputum gene expression measured using a quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction.

Systemic inflammation was an independent predictor of exacerbation frequency 12 months after follow-up in both COPD and asthma. In addition, the Healio news report notes that baseline sputum IL-1? gene expression and protein level predicted the frequent exacerbation phenotype and the number of exacerbations in patients with COPD.

The researchers wrote, “Importantly, we identified a potential causal pathway that shows how airway innate immune activation through Interluekin-1? (IL-1?) results in systemic inflammation and exacerbations in COPD. This pathway could contribute to a vicious cycle between previous and future exacerbations and may identify potential molecular treatment targets that could reduce exacerbations in COPD.”

The researchers concluded, “Anti-inflammatory therapies targeting the airway IL-1?-systemic inflammatory pathway, which break the vicious cycle of inflammation leading to exacerbations, show promise as a strategy for preventing exacerbations. In addition, further studies investigating the role of IL-1? including its relationship to the inflammasome activation and bacterial colonization are [warranted].”

Source: Healio