Current and future biomarkers in allergic asthma

Allergy. 2016 Apr;71(4):475-94. doi: 10.1111/all.12828. Epub 2016 Jan 18.


Diagnosis early in life, sensitization, asthma endotypes, monitoring of disease and treatment progression are key motivations for the exploration of biomarkers for allergic rhinitis and allergic asthma. The number of genes related to allergic rhinitis and allergic asthma increases steadily; however, prognostic genes have not yet entered clinical application. We hypothesize that the combination of multiple genes may generate biomarkers with prognostic potential. The current review attempts to group more than 161 different potential biomarkers involved in respiratory inflammation to pave the way for future classifiers. The potential biomarkers are categorized into either epithelial or infiltrate-derived or mixed origin, epithelial biomarkers. Furthermore, surface markers were grouped into cell-type-specific categories. The current literature provides multiple biomarkers for potential asthma endotypes that are related to T-cell phenotypes such as Th1, Th2, Th9, Th17, Th22 and Tregs and their lead cytokines. Eosinophilic and neutrophilic asthma endotypes are also classified by epithelium-derived CCL-26 and osteopontin, respectively. There are currently about 20 epithelium-derived biomarkers exclusively derived from epithelium, which are likely to innovate biomarker panels as they are easy to sample. This article systematically reviews and categorizes genes and collects current evidence that may promote these biomarkers to become part of allergic rhinitis or allergic asthma classifiers with high prognostic value.

Keywords: allergic asthma; allergic rhinitis; epithelium; infiltrate; local biomarkers.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Airway Remodeling
  • Animals
  • Antigens, Surface / metabolism
  • Asthma / diagnosis
  • Asthma / etiology*
  • Asthma / metabolism*
  • Asthma / prevention & control
  • Biomarkers*
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease
  • Humans
  • Hypersensitivity / etiology*
  • Hypersensitivity / metabolism*
  • Hypersensitivity / prevention & control
  • Immune System / cytology
  • Immune System / immunology
  • Immune System / metabolism
  • Microbiota


  • Antigens, Surface
  • Biomarkers