Potential Asthma Treatment Breakthrough

Over 300 million asthma victims worldwide are given hope that if the study is proven effective, it will potentially cure asthma and bring an end to the daily burden of coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and tightness in the chest. A study led by Cardiff University in the United Kingdom revealed that the calcium-sensing receptor (CaSR) is an integral role in causing the airway disease. The study uncovered the potential source of asthma and a drug that reversed symptoms in laboratory tests. According to the published research in the journal Science Translational Medicine, the team described how manipulating the CaSR with an existing drug reversed all symptoms.

Calcilytics are drugs which increase the secretion of parathyroid hormone, which has an anabolic effect on bone, producing an increase in both bone volume and bone mineral density are used for the treatment of osteoporosis. However, by blocking the CaSR, it reversed all asthmatic symptoms.

Daniela Riccardi, a professor in Cardiff’s School of Biosciences and author of the study describes that their findings as “incredibly exciting.” For the first time, the team was able to link the airway inflammation and airway twitchiness. With the current result of the study, the team aims that to have proper funding to support testing of drugs on humans in the near future. “If we can prove that calcilytics are safe when administered directly to the lung in people, then in five years we could be in a position to treat patients and potentially stop asthma from happening in the first place.” Riccardi added.

Source: http://stm.sciencemag.org/content/7/284/284ra60