Blood biomarkers of asthma

Allergic asthma is a condition of the airways characterized by airway constriction and hyperresponsiveness upon allergen exposure. About half of the allergic asthmatic individuals experience only an acute airway constriction (early response) within several minutes upon exposure to allergen while the other half of individuals experience not only an acute airway constriction but also a chronic airway constriction plus inflammation (late response) within several hours after the allergen exposure. It is not clear why the late response is not developed in all sensitized individuals. Chen Xi Yang will participate in developing an assay that can be implemented in a clinical setting to help predict individuals who are likely to develop the late response by measuring the expression of 55 genes. Successful development of the assay will provide a new diagnostic tool towards distinguishing these two phenotypes of allergic asthma, and will further the mandates of our partner organizations – British Columbia Lung Association and Phoenix Molecular Designs.

Faculty Supervisor:

Scott Tebbutt


Chen Xi Yang


British Columbia Lung Association






University of British Columbia



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