Antioxidant supplementation and exhaled nitric oxide in children with asthma

Allergy Asthma Proc. Jan-Feb 2016;37(1):e8-13. doi: 10.2500/aap.2016.37.3920.


Background: The effect of allergen avoidance on airway inflammation is similar to that observed with treatment with inhaled steroids, whereas inhaled steroids have no effect on oxidative stress-induced inflammation.

Objective: The aim of this study was to retrospectively evaluate the potential effect of an antioxidant dietary supplement on exhaled nitric oxide over a month in pediatric patients on stable antiasthma treatment.

Methods: Forty-seven children with moderate-to-severe asthma were retrospectively evaluated. All the patients were sensitive to Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus and Dermatophagoides farinae, and they were receiving the minimum inhaled corticosteroid dosage required to maintain adequate control. Within a few weeks of admission at Misurina Hospital in the Alps, the regular treatment was gradually reduced, then some children who were receiving a daily dose of inhaled corticosteroids, ≤200 mcg of fluticasone propionate, were prescribed a nutraceutical dietary supplement for at least 4 weeks. Lung function and fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) measurements were recorded at the beginning and after 1 month of the dietary supplementation.

Results: Baseline lung function and FeNO values did not differ between the two groups of patients. After 4 weeks of nutraceutical supplementation, FeNO values decreased, from 19.00 ppb (interquartile range, 14-31 ppb) to 11.00 ppb (interquartile range, 6-23 ppb) (p = 0.03). No significant reduction was observed in the group that did not receive the supplementation, and no significant difference between groups was observed, both at baseline and after 4 weeks of nutraceutical supplementation.

Conclusion: Supplementation with a nutraceutical of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds, such as curcumin, resveratrol, soy phospholipids, zinc, selenium, and vitamin D, may be associated with reduced airway inflammation, as documented by a fall in FeNO.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anti-Asthmatic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage*
  • Asthma / diagnosis
  • Asthma / drug therapy
  • Asthma / epidemiology*
  • Asthma / etiology*
  • Child
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Exhalation*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nitric Oxide*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Spirometry


  • Anti-Asthmatic Agents
  • Antioxidants
  • Nitric Oxide