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Asthma

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Asthma Research in the NIAID Laboratory of Allergic Diseases

The NIAID Laboratory of Allergic Diseases (LAD) conducts an integrated program of basic, translational, and clinical research on immunologic diseases, with an emphasis on understanding the progression of allergic disorders, such as asthma, and inflammatory reactions, such as anaphylaxis. LAD members study the growth and differentiation of mast cells, basophils, and eosinophils, immune cells that play important roles in allergic reactions. LAD investigators also conduct research on the products generated by mast cells, basophils, and eosinophils that promote inflammation.

LAD investigators study mechanisms underlying the growth and contraction of bronchial smooth muscle cells in asthma. Evidence suggests that the bronchioles of people with asthma are hyper-responsive to allergens, such as pet dander, rodents, and air pollutants, which leads to narrowing of the airways. Investigators are interested in how the signaling pathways of G-protein-coupled receptors, the primary controllers of airway smooth muscle contraction and relaxation, are regulated in the bronchioles.

LAD investigators translate their research findings at the bench into the clinic, where they study the progression of allergic disorders. These clinical studies help facilitate the development of novel anti-inflammatory approaches to the treatment of allergic disorders and systemic mast-cell diseases.

Read more about the work of LAD.

Last Updated January 19, 2011