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Remodelling of the upper airways in allergic rhinitis: is it a feature of the disease?


Dr Rami J. Salib, Department of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology, Mailpoint 810, Southampton General Hospital, Tremona Road, Southampton SO16 6YD, UK.


The traditional viewpoint that inflammation, owing to a genetic T-helper type 2 (Th2)-directed imbalance, is the cause of allergic rhinitis has meant that the potential coexistence of other genetic defects and the relevance of any airway remodelling changes to disease pathogenesis and persistence have received scant attention, and as such remain controversial areas. This is particularly so in view of the limited published work in this field, which has so far reported markedly conflicting findings. This review endeavours to outline what is known about the nature of the remodelling response within the upper airway in allergic rhinitis, in addition to highlighting specific areas where further research is warranted.