A team led by Mayo Clinic researchers has determined that over-reactive immune responses to airborne fungi could cause the stuffy noses and airway inflammation among sufferers of chronic rhinosinusitis. These findings could one day lead to a new, longer-lasting treatment.
"It’s time to recognize there is a greater sensitivity to airborne fungi in some patients, and therefore we need to remove or reduce the fungal exposure," says lead investigator Hirohito Kita, M.D.
In last Fridays electronic edition of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, the Mayo Clinic researchers and a colleague from the University of Utah conclude that certain species of airborne fungus produce spores and by-products, that when inhaled, prompt irregular and damaging immune responses. The responses, in turn, produce the congestion and inflammation. Chronic rhinosinusitis costs society about $5.6 billion a year. And that doesn’t include an estimated $70 million in annual lost work days, as well as a diminished quality of life.
Bob Nellis | EurekAlert!
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