Purpose of review: Asthma is a heterogeneous disease characterized by multiple phenotypes. Treatment of patients with severe disease can be challenging. Predictive biomarkers are measurable characteristics that reflect the underlying pathophysiology of asthma and can identify patients that are likely to respond to a given therapy. This review discusses current knowledge regarding predictive biomarkers in asthma.
Recent findings: Recent trials evaluating biologic therapies targeting IgE, IL-5, IL-13, and IL-4 have utilized predictive biomarkers to identify patients who might benefit from treatment. Other work has suggested that using composite biomarkers may offer enhanced predictive capabilities in tailoring asthma therapy. Multiple biomarkers including sputum eosinophil count, blood eosinophil count, fractional concentration of nitric oxide in exhaled breath (FeNO), and serum periostin have been used to identify which patients will respond to targeted asthma medications. Further work is needed to integrate predictive biomarkers into clinical practice.
Keywords: Asthma; Biologics; Biomarkers; Endotypes; Phenotypes; Therapy.