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J Cell Biol. 2014 Jun 9;205(5):621-31. doi: 10.1083/jcb.201401050.

The cell biology of asthma.

Author information

1
Lung Biology Center and Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94143.
2
Lung Biology Center and Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94143 dean.sheppard@ucsf.edu.

Abstract

The clinical manifestations of asthma are caused by obstruction of the conducting airways of the lung. Two airway cell types are critical for asthma pathogenesis: epithelial cells and smooth muscle cells. Airway epithelial cells, which are the first line of defense against inhaled pathogens and particles, initiate airway inflammation and produce mucus, an important contributor to airway obstruction. The other main cause of airway obstruction is contraction of airway smooth muscle. Complementary experimental approaches involving cultured cells, animal models, and human clinical studies have provided many insights into diverse mechanisms that contribute to airway epithelial and smooth muscle cell pathology in this complex disease.

PMID:
24914235
PMCID:
PMC4050726
DOI:
10.1083/jcb.201401050
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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