Immunomodulation: The future of allergy and asthma treatment

R. Matthew Bloebaum, J. Andrew Grant, Sanjiv Sur

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Purpose of review: As the prevalence of asthma and allergic disease increases around the world, it is clear that more effective therapies and disease-modifying agents are needed. Treatment for allergic disease is evolving with an increase in understanding of the etiology. Recent findings: The first immunomodulatory treatment was recently approved for use in the United States when the Food and Drug Administration approved the use of a humanized monoclonal anti-IgE antibody in patients with allergic asthma. Another strategy that has proved effective in a murine model is the downregulation of the whole immune system by targeting adhesion molecules, which has been evaluated in a recent human trial. Other strategies for the treatment of allergic diseases concentrate on refocusing the immune system away from an allergic-type response. These include the use of targeted therapies towards specific cytokines, cytokine receptors or chemokine receptors, and the use of specific bacterial DNA sequences (unmethylated cytosine-guanine dinucleotides). Finally, attention is being focused on possible therapies that may tilt the immune response to a non-allergic response by interfering with signaling molecule pathways. Summary: Immunomodulation will play a key role in future therapies for allergic disease. These treatment modalities may not only treat allergic disease, but also be beneficial in reducing the morbidity and mortality for which it is responsible.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-67
Number of pages5
JournalCurrent opinion in allergy and clinical immunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Allergic disease
  • Asthma
  • Immunomodulation
  • T helper type 2 cytokines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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