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Asthma flare-ups reduced by antibody injection according to trials

September 20, 2016

woman-using-asthma-inhalerInjections of a potential new therapy – benralizumab – over the course of a year have reduced the frequency of asthma flare-ups in people with the most severe form of asthma, two trials suggest. In two trials, the progressively worsening symptoms associated with severe asthma reduced in frequency with benralizumab injections. Asthma exacerbations (asthma attack), or flare-ups, are progressively worsening symptoms of swollen and inflamed airways, coughing, wheezing, chest tightness, and trouble breathing. People with severe, uncontrolled asthma often have high levels of eosinophils in their blood and airways – known as eosinophilia – which is associated with frequent asthma exacerbations. Benralizumab is a monoclonal antibody therapy that uses antibodies that are made in a lab rather than by a person’s immune system. The antibodies recruit other parts of the immune system to rapidly clear away eosinophils – immune cells that play a role in allergies and asthma. Cytokine interleukin-5 (IL-5) is the main driver of eosinophil proliferation, maturation, activation, and survival. Mepolizumab and reslizumab target the IL-5 molecule directly to prevent the eosinophil matura

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