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The links between chronic rhinosinusitis and asthma

Pakdaman, Michael N; Luong, Amber

Current Opinion in Otolaryngology & Head and Neck Surgery: June 2011 - Volume 19 - Issue 3 - p 218–223
doi: 10.1097/MOO.0b013e32834500a8
Allergy: Edited by Berrylin Ferguson

Purpose of review Chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) and asthma are two leading causes of morbidity with many shared clinical features. Their relationship has initially been linked by the atopic pathway. However, understanding of the true pathophysiology of each of these conditions is still under investigation.

Recent findings Recent studies have described new common pathogens, such as fungi and Staphylococcus aureus, as well as disease biomarkers such as nitric oxide and interleukin (IL)-17A, involved in both asthma and CRS pathophysiology. These new discoveries offer insight into understanding these upper and lower airway diseases and may potentially affect treatment management. In the following review, we intend to provide an overview of the recent developments in the relevant areas of research within the past year.

Summary Reactions to fungal stimuli and superantigens, as well as biomarkers such as nitric oxide and IL-17A, may play a role in the pathogenesis of asthma and CRS and may explain their historic relationship.

Department of Otorhinolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Texas Sinus Institute, University of Texas Medical School at Houston, Houston, Texas, USA

Correspondence to Amber Luong, MD, PhD, 6431 Fannin Street, MSB 5.036, Houston, TX 77030, USA Tel: +1 713 500 5421; fax: +1 713 383 3727; e-mail:

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.