Discovery of New Treatment to Overcome Resistance to Steroids in Severe Asthma Patients

October 25, 2013 · Filed Under Trendy Products 

RIKEN New TreatmentResearchers from the RIKEN Center for Integrative Medical Sciences and Keio University in Japan has are working on a new treatment that can be used to overcome resistance to steroids in severe asthma patients. A type of lymphocytes called natural helper (NH) cells plays a critical role in corticosteroid resistance. According to the study by the researchers at both institutes the anti-psychotic drug Pimozide can be used to overcome resistance to steroids in severe asthma patients. T lymphocytes and NH cells in asthmatic lung produce proteins named interleukin (IL)-5 and IL-13 responsible for severe airway inflammation. In asthma patients, inhaled steroids function by suppressing both T lymphocytes and NH cells. However, in severe asthma patients another protein called interleukin-33 (IL-33) is produced in the airways which strongly activate NH cells to produce IL-5 and IL-13, causing a severe airway inflammation.
The study shows that NH resistance to steroids is induced by the protein thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP), which is present in the airways of patients suffering from severe asthma. The team of researcher tested reagents which is capable of blocking the intracellular signals triggered by TSLP in NH cells. They identified one drug, Pimozide, and approved anit-psychotic drug, which can restore the effect of steroids on NH cells.

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