Airway Remodeling in Asthma

  • William J. Calhoun


In a general sense, the term remodeling means structural change to a tissue or organ that develops in response to physiologic or pathophysiologic processes. Thus, left ventricular hypertrophy can be considered a remodeling response to hypertension or aortic stenosis. In the airway, structural changes develop as a consequence of many chronic inflammatory diseases of the airway, including asthma. These structural, anatomic changes may or may not be associated with physiologic or functional alterations, which are discussed in this chapter. As applied to the airway in asthma, the term remodeling has taken on a misleadingly broader connotation to include irreversible airflow limitation, bronchial hyperresponsiveness, and a lack of physiologic improvement with otherwise effective asthma therapy. This chapter defines airway remodeling in the narrow sense of structural change of the airway as a consequence of asthma. Common changes of airway remodeling in asthma include thickening of the reticular basement membrane (RBM) (or lamina reticularis), goblet cell hyperplasia, altered matrix proteins, increased mass of airway smooth muscle, and increases in submucosal vasculature.


Mast Cell Asthmatic Patient Fluticasone Propionate Airway Smooth Muscle Respir Crit 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • William J. Calhoun

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