This article addresses new studies about the processes through which viruses cause asthma exacerbations. Researchers have made significant progress in the knowledge of the pathophysiology of virus-induced asthma exacerbations. This includes new discoveries on the involvement of bacteria, the regulation of interferon responses, and the finding of innate immune pathways that link viral infections to allergic inflammation. The contribution of the ORMDL3/GSDMB locus on 17q, the processes behind the farming effect, and the discovery that CDHR3 binds to rhinovirus species C have all contributed to progress in explaining the genetic risk factors for asthma exacerbations.
Exacerbations of asthma are complicated diseases involving the intricate interplay between environmental exposures and innate and adaptive immune function in genetically susceptible people. Recent discoveries of these variables’ interrelationships open up new avenues for therapeutic intervention.