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Childhood asthma: recent developments and update

Mantzouranis, Eva; Papadopouli, Eva; Michailidi, Eleni

Current Opinion in Pulmonary Medicine: January 2014 - Volume 20 - Issue 1 - p 8–16
doi: 10.1097/MCP.0000000000000014
ASTHMA: Edited by Nicola A. Hanania and Zuzana Diamant

Purpose of review The purpose of this review is to provide an update on childhood asthma specifically related to the underlying genetic background and pathophysiology of asthma and their interaction with environmental stimuli. We will also discuss emerging data in the field of disease phenotyping.

Recent findings The field of genetics is continuously evolving to expand our knowledge on the cause of disease. Childhood onset asthma has been related to atopy and exposure to early-life infections. More recently, phenotypes have been used to classify asthma as transient and persistent, but the association of each phenotype with the genetic origin of asthma is not clearly understood.

Summary This review covers the topics of genetics, epigenetics, pathophysiology, phenotypes and treatment as they relate to childhood asthma. Overall, it provides a basis for the future of asthma treatment through description of the current research.

Department of Pediatrics, University Hospital, Heraklion, Crete, Greece

Correspondence to Eva Mantzouranis, MD, PhD, Department of Pediatrics, University Hospital, Heraklion, Crete, Greece. Tel: +30 6944180228; e-mail:

© 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins