Asthma is a chronic lung disease affecting millions worldwide. While classically acknowledged to result from allergen-driven type 2 inflammatory responses leading to IgE and cytokine production and the influx of immune cells such as mast cells and eosinophils, the wide range in asthmatic pathobiological subtypes lead to highly variable responses to anti-inflammatory therapies. Thus, there is a need to develop patient-specific therapies capable of addressing the full spectrum of asthmatic lung disease. Moreover, delivery of targeted treatments for asthma directly to the lung may help to maximize therapeutic benefit, but challenges remain in design of effective formulations for the inhaled route. In this review, we discuss the current understanding of asthmatic disease progression as well as genetic and epigenetic disease modifiers associated with asthma severity and exacerbation of disease. We also overview the limitations of clinically available treatments for asthma and discuss pre-clinical models of asthma used to evaluate new therapies. Based on the shortcomings of existing treatments, we highlight recent advances and new approaches to treat asthma via inhalation for monoclonal antibody delivery, mucolytic therapy to target airway mucus hypersecretion and gene therapies to address underlying drivers of disease. Finally, we conclude with discussion on the prospects for an inhaled vaccine to prevent asthma.
Copyright © 2023. Published by Elsevier B.V.