Mechanisms of bronchial hyperreactivity in asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Proc Am Thorac Soc. 2004;1(2):77-87. doi: 10.1513/pats.2306025.


Bronchial hyperreactivity has long been recognized as a hallmark of chronic asthma. Less is known about the prevalence and mechanisms of hyperreactivity in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Currently, it is unclear whether the role and mechanisms of hyperreactivity are similar in patients with asthma and COPD or whether the underlying pathophysiologic abnormalities are different for both diseases. The aim of this review is to present an overview of current knowledge of the mechanisms of bronchial hyperreactivity in asthma and COPD.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Asthma / complications*
  • Asthma / physiopathology*
  • Bronchial Hyperreactivity / etiology*
  • Bronchial Hyperreactivity / physiopathology*
  • Bronchial Provocation Tests
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / complications*
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / physiopathology*
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Risk Factors