American Lung Association Asthma Research in the News – Is it Time for you to Get Involved?

(May 21, 2014)

Each year, the American Lung Association funds research that leads to improved treatments and, one day, may pave the way to a cure for asthma.  Whether this is through basic laboratory research or clinical trials, asthma research is on the doorstep of numerous medical discoveries that promise a healthier future for those with asthma.

The American Lung Association-Asthma Clinical Research Centers (ACRC) network is a Lung Association-sponsored research program that undertakes large clinical trials that will provide useful information important to the direct care of people who have asthma. Clinical trials, which are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, are conducted to evaluate new drugs or treatments and also new uses of approved treatments in scientifically controlled settings. Clinical trials conducted by the ACRC help advance asthma healthcare with the help of people who agree to participate in the trial.  

The ACRC network, which has 20 clinical centers and a data coordinating center, is the largest of its kind outside the pharmaceutical industry. The ACRC plays a unique and important role in asthma research, sorting out a myriad of “simple” questions that are important to asthma patients' daily care.

One example is our recent trial: ACRC Study of Soy Isoflavones in Asthma (SOYA). SOYA was a trial to assess the impact of soy supplements on asthma control. Most recently, at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, Dr. Lewis Smith, lead investigator for SOYA, gave a presentation on the results of the trial. Dr. Smith explained that lung function did not improve with increased soy isoflavone intake. To learn more, watch the video interview of Dr. Smith.

Recruiting for New Asthma Trial
Do you smoke and have asthma?  If so, we want to hear from you.  The ACRC is currently recruiting asthmatic smokers for a study examining whether asthma control assessment measures and treatment options work as well in those who smoke.  Between 20-30 percent of the over 25 million Americans with asthma currently smoke.  And yet, current asthma treatment guidelines may not be appropriate for smokers with research indicating that inhaled corticosteroids, the recommended mainstay for treat­ing persistent asthma, being less effective in smokers.  The clinical trial Smoking Asthmatics Cohort Study (SCS) is recruiting current cigarette smokers, between the ages of 18-50 with history of asthma. This six week study will evaluate whether asthma control assessment measures are as effective when used with smoking asthmatics as they are with non-smoking asthmatics. To learn more about the SCS study, visit http://www.lung.org/finding-cures/our-research/acrc/protocols-recruiting.html.