Skip to main content

Asthma’s androgen connection

Oct. 12, 2018, 10:30 AM

by Niyati Vachharajani

Women are more prone to developing asthma, particularly more severe types of asthma, compared to men. Studies have shown that the sex hormones, estrogen and testosterone, influence the mechanisms driving airway inflammation in animal models of asthma.

However, it has remained unclear how estrogen and testosterone affect pathways that increase the number of eosinophils and neutrophils, specific types of white blood cells, entering the lung in asthma.

In the current issue of the Journal of Immunology, Dawn C. Newcomb, PhD, and colleagues reportthat testosterone decreased type 2, eosinophilic and IL-17A, neutrophilic responses, whereas ovarian hormones increased these responses in a mouse model of airway inflammation.

These findings provide a possible reason why the prevalence of asthma is higher in women and suggest that testosterone derivatives have a potential role in being used to treat patients with more severe types of asthma.

This work was supported by National Institutes of Health grants HL122554, AI121420 and HL122554.

Recent Stories from VUMC News and Communications Publications

Marissa Benchea has CF, and she is one of hundreds of thousands of adults not only surviving but thriving with a chronic childhood disease.

Vanderbilt Medicine

Marissa Benchea has CF, and she is one of hundreds of thousands of adults not only surviving but thriving with a chronic childhood disease.

One hundred years ago, multiple “waves” of a deadly flu swept across the world.

Vanderbilt Medicine

One hundred years ago, multiple “waves” of a deadly flu swept across the world.

A diagnosis of cancer at any age is tragic, but during the adolescent and young adult years, it’s especially complicated.

Hope

A diagnosis of cancer at any age is tragic, but during the adolescent and young adult years, it’s especially complicated.

Karen Dyer Young cares for patients and members of the Dayani Center who have or are recovering from cancer or a stem cell transplant.

Momentum

Karen Dyer Young cares for patients and members of the Dayani Center who have or are recovering from cancer or a stem cell transplant.

more