Host susceptibility to environmental triggers is the most likely explanation for the development of asthma. Quantifying gene expression levels in disease-relevant tissues and cell types using fast evolving genomic technologies have generated new hypotheses about the pathogenesis of asthma and identified new therapeutic targets to treat asthma and asthma-exacerbations. New biomarkers and distinct transcriptomic phenotypes in blood, sputum and other tissues were also identified and proved effective to refine asthma classification and guide targeted therapies. The wealth of information provided by transcriptomic studies in asthma is yet to be fully exploited, but discoveries in this field may soon be implemented in clinical settings to improve diagnosis and treatment of patients afflicted with this common disease.
Keywords: asthma; biomarkers; gene expression profiling; predictive testing; transcriptomics.