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Clinical characteristics, lung function and airway inflammatory patterns of Brazilian children with severe therapy-resistant asthma

  • Rodrigues Andrea1,
  • Giovana Santos1,
  • Rodrigo Souza1,
  • Mauro Vargas1,
  • Cristian Roncada1,
  • Leonardo Pinto1,
  • Marcus Jones1,
  • Renato Stein1 and
  • Paulo Pitrez1
Clinical and Translational Allergy20155(Suppl 2):P5

Published: 23 March 2015


AsthmaLung FunctionPublic SchoolAirway InflammationNormal Lung


Severe therapy-resistant asthma (STRA) in children has been poorly studied, with mechanisms of disease remaining unclear. The aim of the study is to describe the clinical characteristics, lung function and lower airways inflammation in Brazilian children with STRA, comparing with mild asthmatics and healthy controls.


Children with STRA from a follow-up reference centre, and mild asthmatics and healthy controls from a cross-sectional study from public schools, were selected. Clinical characteristics, spirometry reports and induced sputum results were collected and compared from study databases.


20 children with STRA (mean age: 11.3±2.9 years; 62% males) were included, and paired with 70 children with mild asthma and 27 healthy controls. 18/20 (90%) STRA children were atopic, and only 2/20 (10%) were sensitized to pets. Lung function from children with STRA was not different from the other groups studied. From 13 STRA children with induced sputum obtained, we have found seven, four and two neutrophilic, eosinophilic and paucigranulocytic patterns, respectively. The number/percentage of inflammatory cells and pattern of sputum inflammation were not different between children with STRA (n=13) and milder asthma (n=70). From 5 sputums repeated in STRA children, 4 (80%) had the inflammatory pattern changed. Six STRA patients are under omalizumab treatment.


Children with STRA have nearly normal lung function and their airway inflammatory pattern seems not to be different from children with milder asthma. The mechanisms involved in the uncontrolled disease of children with STRA are not clear and should be better addressed in future studies.

Authors’ Affiliations

PUCRS, Pediatrics, Porto Alegre, Brazil


© Andrea et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2015

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.