Pierre-Régis Burgel, Sanjay H. Chotirmall. (2020) “Can’t Stop the Feeling”: Symptoms as the Key to Trial Success in Bronchiectasis?. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine 201:12, 1461-1462. Online publication date: 15-Jun-2020. First Page | Full Text | PDF (500 KB) | Supplemental Material
Rationale: Allergic sensitization is associated with poor clinical outcomes in asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and cystic fibrosis; however, its presence, frequency, and clinical significance in non–cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis remain unclear.
Objectives: To determine the frequency and geographic variability that exists in a sensitization pattern to common and specific allergens, including house dust mite and fungi, and to correlate such patterns to airway immune-inflammatory status and clinical outcomes in bronchiectasis.
Methods: Patients with bronchiectasis were recruited in Asia (Singapore and Malaysia) and the United Kingdom (Scotland) (n = 238), forming the Cohort of Asian and Matched European Bronchiectasis, which matched recruited patients on age, sex, and bronchiectasis severity. Specific IgE response against a range of common allergens was determined, combined with airway immune-inflammatory status and correlated to clinical outcomes. Clinically relevant patient clusters, based on sensitization pattern and airway immune profiles (“immunoallertypes”), were determined.
Measurements and Main Results: A high frequency of sensitization to multiple allergens was detected in bronchiectasis, exceeding that in a comparator cohort with allergic rhinitis (n = 149). Sensitization was associated with poor clinical outcomes, including decreased pulmonary function and more severe disease. “Sensitized bronchiectasis” was classified into two immunoallertypes: one fungal driven and proinflammatory, the other house dust mite driven and chemokine dominant, with the former demonstrating poorer clinical outcome.
Conclusions: Allergic sensitization occurs at high frequency in patients with bronchiectasis recruited from different global centers. Improving endophenotyping of sensitized bronchiectasis, a clinically significant state, and a “treatable trait” permits therapeutic intervention in appropriate patients, and may allow improved stratification in future bronchiectasis research and clinical trials.
Supported by the Singapore Ministry of Health’s National Medical Research Council under its Transition Award NMRC/TA/0048/2016 (S.H.C.) and Changi General Hospital Research grant CHF2016.03-P (T.B.L.). The work performed at NUS was supported by the Singapore Ministry of Education Academic Research Fund, SIgN, and National Medical Research Council grants N-154-000-038-001, R-154-000-404-112, R-154-000-553-112, R-154-000-565-112, R-154-000-630-112, R-154-000-A08-592, R-154-000-A27-597, SIgN-06-006, SIgN-08-020, and NMRC/1150/2008 (F.T.C.); J.D.C. is supported by the GSK/British Lung Foundation Chair of Respiratory Research.