Asthma patients who dont respond to steroid treatment suffer repeated asthma attacks, and are at greater risk of dying from the condition. Researchers from Kings College London have found that vitamin D3 could substantially improve the responsiveness of these patients to steroid treatment, offering them hope of an improvement in their condition. Their results are published today in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.
Asthma is usually treated very effectively with inhaled steroids but for some patients, taking steroid tablets is the only way of controlling their condition, and this can cause considerable side effects. Unfortunately a sub-group of people with severe asthma fail to show clinical improvement, even with high doses of oral steroids, limiting their treatment options.
Professor Tak Lee, Director of the MRC-Asthma UK Centre in Allergic Mechanisms of Asthma at Kings College London and Imperial College, who was involved in the latest study, explained its importance: This research is really exciting and points the direction towards potential new strategies for reversing steroid resistance. This has major implications for how to treat patients with severe asthma and could also substantially reduce the use of NHS resources.
Gemma Bradley | EurekAlert!
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