Support The World's Smartest Network

Help the New York Academy of Sciences bring late-breaking scientific information about the COVID-19 pandemic to global audiences. Please make a tax-deductible gift today.

This site uses cookies.
Learn more.


This website uses cookies. Some of the cookies we use are essential for parts of the website to operate while others offer you a better browsing experience. You give us your permission to use cookies, by continuing to use our website after you have received the cookie notification. To find out more about cookies on this website and how to change your cookie settings, see our Privacy policy and Terms of Use.

We encourage you to learn more about cookies on our site in our Privacy policy and Terms of Use.


Understanding Severe Asthma: Inflammation, Lung Repair, and Beyond

Understanding Severe Asthma
Reported by
Pia-Kelsey O’Neill

Posted June 28, 2019

Pia-Kelsey O’Neill holds a PhD in Neuroscience from Columbia University, where she is currently completing a postdoctoral fellowship.

Presented By

The Biochemical Pharmacology Discussion Group

The New York Academy of Sciences


Asthma is a chronic, heterogeneous inflammatory disease of the airways, affecting approximately 300 million people worldwide. Presently, asthma is believed to have a multifactorial diagnosis that includes several underlying diseases or endotypes. While various forms of asthma have common observable symptoms, or phenotypes, such as wheezing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath, the diversity of endotypes gives rise to a variety of other phenotypes. Severe asthma, for example, is defined as an uncontrolled or only partially controlled form of asthma despite intensive treatment and is associated with increased morbidity, mortality, and consumption of health care resources. It is therefore unsurprising that there is no cure-all medication to treat asthma. However, novel insights into the pathophysiology of severe asthma, airway inflammation, and mechanisms of lung repair and remodeling may lead to new therapeutic approaches. Learn more in this summary of our April 26, 2019 symposium.

Symposium Highlights

  • A growing understanding of heterogeneity in asthma has allowed us to identify molecular phenotypes of the disease.
  • Genetic variation underlies phenotypic variation in some forms of asthma.
  • Air pollution and global climate change affect the occurrence and severity of asthma.
  • The Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway contributes to to impaired lung repair and epithelial cell reprogramming.
New Insights in the Molecular Phenotyping and Immunology of Severe Asthma
Novel Concepts in the Pathophysiology of Asthma
Emerging Therapeutics to Target Severe Asthma