Allergic asthma is a complex and chronic inflammatory disorder which is associated with airway hyper-responsiveness and tissue remodelling of the airway structure. Although originally thought to be a Th2-driven inflammatory response to inhaled innocuous allergen, the immune response in asthma is now considered highly heterogeneous. There are now various in vivo systems which have been designed to examine the pathways leading to the development of this chronic immune response and reflect, in part this heterogeneity. Furthermore, the emergence of endogenous immunoregulatory pathways and active pro-resolving mediators hold great potential for future therapeutic intervention. In this review, the key cellular and molecular mediators relating to chronic allergic airway disease are discussed, as well as emerging players in the regulation of chronic allergic inflammation.
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