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    An Introduction to Asthma

    Asthma is a common and potentially life-threatening chronic inflammatory airway disease. Despite many therapeutic advances, it remains underdiagnosed and undertreated. The mainstay of therapy is maintenance controller therapy such as inhaled corticosteroids, together with separate short-acting β2-agonists for acute symptom relief, but treatment adherence is a major challenge. The heterogeneity of asthma makes it difficult to identify specific therapeutic targets. For patients with specific subtypes of severe asthma, such as eosinophilic asthma, targeted therapies including omalizumab, mepolizumab, reslizumab, benralizumab and dupilumab, can reduce exacerbation rates and improve disease control. As experience with biological therapies increases, they are expected to play a more prominent role in treatment strategies, and novel therapeutic targets such as semaphorins and RhoA/Rho‐kinase, are being investigated.

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