Purpose of review: There are a considerable number of patients with moderate-to-severe uncontrolled asthma needing additional therapy. Omalizumab, an anti-IgE monoclonal antibody, improves control while reducing IgE-mediated airway inflammation and potentially interfering in the progressive remodeling process. The clinical implications are reductions in the required doses of inhaled steroids, a decrease in exacerbation number, and a reduction in emergency room visits and hospitalizations. In addition to its use in asthma, there is an increasing interest on the use of omalizumab for other uncontrolled IgE-mediated diseases, supported by the favorable risk–benefit background. The present review explores the most recent publications on the use of omalizumab for allergic asthma and other atopic conditions in children.
Recent findings: Omalizumab has also shown efficacy in allergic rhinitis, and it is being investigated in the treatment of anaphylaxis, food allergy, atopic dermatitis, and chronic spontaneous urticaria, as well as cystic fibrosis and allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis. Despite the benefits shown so far, more data are needed for optimal use in these conditions, particularly looking at the safety issues that have to be confirmed.
Summary: Confirmatory evidence on the efficacy and safety of omalizumab in children is reviewed, as well as newest fields of applicability in which IgE is involved in disease mechanism.
aFaculty of Medicine, CIMER (Research Center of Respiratory Medicine), Catholic University of Córdoba, Córdoba
bAllergy & Asthma Unit, Hospital San Bernardo, Salta, Argentina
Correspondence to Carlos E. Baena-Cagnani, Santa Rosa 381, Córdoba, Argentina. Tel: +54 351 423 08 86; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org