In summary, the fine-structure mapping of chromosome 5q31–q33 for genes providing susceptibility to asthma will involve multiple steps. High resolution linkage analyses, will better define the‘critical’ region harbouring a gene(s) determining risk factors such as BHR and elevated serum IgE in asthma. The chromosomal region specified will be subcloned (YACs) and assembled into overlapping fragments providing a physical map that includes the relative positions of markers and candidate genes. Gene candidates will be scrutinized for genetic mutations on the basis of their chromosomal location and the likelihood of their involvement in the pulmonary inflammatory response central to the patho-physiology of asthma. If none of the known candidate genes mapped to the critical region of chromosome 5q are shown to cause asthma, new genes expressed within cells in lung and potentially important in asthma will be identified by direct selection and exon trapping. These reagents and studies will facilitate the process of gene discovery in allergy and asthma, and lead to new diagnostic, preventive, and therapeutic approaches to this common disorder.
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