Research in the Division of Asthma

Asthma and allergic diseases are a serious public health burden and affect over 40% of the population worldwide. In the Division of Asthma Research our overarching goal is to develop new prevention and treatment strategies for allergic diseases that are personalized and target high risk populations at the critical time periods when they are most vulnerable.

Research Focus  

We are focused on understanding the total exposure relevant to asthma from the cell and individual level to the patient, family neighborhood and community level. We aim to identify the factors that contribute to asthma development and symptoms, determine the mechanisms by which these factors contribute to disease, delineate how effects of environmental exposure are modified by genetics and other exposures, and identify biomarkers of exposure and disease activity and severity in an individual. Our current projects include a basic, translational and clinical research that investigates the role of these factors in promoting disease development and activity.

Research Strategy

The division utilizes transdisciplinary approaches integrating human cohorts, in vitro systems, and animal models to address these complex problems. Numerous other factors affect disease outcomes as well, including psychosocial factors, community health perceptions, and health literacy.

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PARS Study graphic.

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A Pediatric Asthma Risk Score to better predict asthma development in young children

For clinicians and researchers, the ability to accurately predict which children will have asthma is a challenge. Asthma prediction matrices use a combination of major and minor criteria to give a binary yes/no response as to whether a child will have asthma. However, personalized prediction tools are needed that take into consideration the individual combination of risk factors to better estimate the spectrum of asthma risk. Therefore we developed and validated the PARS, a continuous risk score for asthma, which has increased sensitivity over the API and mAPI and captures children with mild-to-moderate risk.

Learn more about PARS