Cystic Fibrosis

  • André M. Cantin
Part of the Respiratory Medicine book series (RM)


Cystic fibrosis (CF) remains the most common lethal disease associated with a single gene defect in populations of European descent. The gene that prevents CF is the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR), an ATP-dependent anion channel expressed mostly at the apical surface of epithelia lined with mucus secretions. CF results from a deficiency in CFTR amount and/or function. Fortunately, the clinical situation is rapidly improving for CF patients and their families. The mean age of survival has markedly increased in recent years. These improvements are attributable to the high quality of care that has evolved in the multidisciplinary treatment of secondary defects such as lung infections and malabsorption. Furthermore, the hope of finding a cure or control for individuals with CF is buoyed up by novel pharmacological approaches that directly address the primary defect in CFTR function. This review will examine various aspects of CF including its epidemiology, genetic basis and molecular pathogenesis, animal models, clinical presentation, diagnostic approaches, conventional treatments, and future therapeutic avenues to correct dysfunctional CFTR.


bronchiectasis airway infection inflammation mucus hereditary lung disease CFTR epithelium pancreatic insufficiency 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • André M. Cantin
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MedicineUniversity of SherbrookeSherbrookeCanada

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