In a study led by UCSF team an existence of relationship between asthma and composition of bacterial species, which are present in bronchial airways was revealed.
This finding could suggest new treatment or even potential cures for the common inflammatory disease.
Using new detection methods, researchers learned that the diversity of microbes inside the respiratory tract is far vaster than previously suspected - creating a complex and inter-connected microbial neighborhood that appears to be associated with asthma, and akin to what has also been found in inflammatory bowel disease, vaginitis, periodontitis, and possibly even obesity.
In their three-year pilot project, the scientists collected samples from the airway linings of 65 adults with mild to moderate asthma and 10 healthy subjects. Then, using a tool that can identify approximately 8,500 distinct groups of bacteria in a single assay, the scientists profiled the organisms present in each sample to look for relationships between bacterial community composition and clinical characteristics of the patients' asthma.The researchers found that bronchial airway samples from asthmatic patients contained far more bacteria than samples from healthy patients. The scientists also found greater bacterial diversity in the asthmatic patients who had the most hyper-responsive or sensitive airways (a feature of asthma).
The study has been published online in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.