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Comparable effect of a leukotriene receptor antagonist and long-acting beta2-adrenergic agonist in cough variant asthma

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Cough variant asthma (CVA) is a common cause of chronic persistent cough, in which allergic airway inflammation may play a role. Although current guidelines recommend bronchodilators and anti-inflammatory drugs for the treatment, comparison of the efficacy of these medications has not been investigated. This study was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of pranlukast, a leukotriene receptor antagonist, and salmeterol, a long-acting beta2-adrenergic agonist, in the treatment of CVA. The study was a randomized, controlled, parallel-group, multicenter trial. After a 4-week run-in period, 49 patients with newly diagnosed CVA were assigned to receive oral pranlukast (225 mg, b.i.d.) or inhaled salmeterol (100 g, b.i.d.) for 4 weeks. Primary outcome measure was cough symptom and secondary outcome measures were pulmonary function and eosinophilic airway inflammation. Treatment with pranlukast and salmeterol each decreased cough symptom scores, where the changes from baseline values were significantly greater in the pranlukast group than in the salmeterol group. Forced expiratory volume in 1 second and peak expiratory flow (PEF) increased in the two treatment groups with the same magnitudes, but significant decreases in diurnal variation of PEF and eosinophil counts and eosinophil cationic protein contents in the peripheral blood and induced sputum were observed only in the pranlukast group. In view of antitussive and anti-inflammatory actions, the leukotriene receptor antagonist pranlukast seems to be more effective than the long-acting beta2-adrenergic agonist salmeterol in the treatment of CVA.

Keywords: Anti-inflammatory effect; cough variant asthma; eosinophil cationic protein; eosinophilia; induced sputum; pranlukast; pulmonary function; salmeterol

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: First Department of Medicine, Tokyo Women’s Medical University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan

Publication date: September 1, 2010

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  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma and by having the potential to directly impact the quality of patient care. AAP welcomes the submission of original works including peer-reviewed original research and clinical trial results. Additionally, as the official journal of the Eastern Allergy Conference (EAC), AAP will publish content from EAC poster sessions as well as review articles derived from EAC lectures.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

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    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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