Biologics are a class of medications that can be used to treat asthma, a chronic lung disease characterized by inflammation and narrowing of the airways. Biologics work by targeting specific parts of the immune system that are involved in the development of asthma.
Biologics are typically used in patients with moderate to severe asthma that is not well controlled by traditional asthma medications such as inhaled corticosteroids, long-acting beta-agonists and leukotriene modifiers.
There are several different types of biologics that are used to treat asthma, including:
- Anti-IgE (Omalizumab) it works by binding to immunoglobulin E (IgE), a type of antibody that plays a key role in the development of asthma.
- Anti-IL-5 (Mepolizumab and reslizumab) they target interleukin-5 (IL-5), a protein that is involved in the development of eosinophilic asthma, a type of asthma characterized by high levels of eosinophils, a type of white blood cell.
- Anti-IL-4/IL-13 (Dupilumab) it targets interleukin-4 and interleukin-13, two proteins that are involved in the development of asthma.
- Anti-IL-33 (Benralizumab) it targets interleukin-33, a protein that is involved in the development of asthma.
Biologics are typically administered via subcutaneous injection or intravenous infusion and are usually prescribed by an allergist/immunologist or pulmonologist. They can be effective in reducing symptoms of asthma, but they do have potential side effects, so it's important to discuss the benefits and risks with your doctor before starting treatment.
Also, it's important to note that biologics are not meant to replace traditional asthma therapy, but rather to be used in combination with them.
Last updated : 1/27/2023