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Keywords:

  • airway;
  • chronic rhinosinusitis;
  • extracellular matrix;
  • fibrosis;
  • remodelling

Tissue remodelling reported in upper airways include epithelial hyperplasia, increased matrix deposition in the nasal or paranasal lining, matrix degradation and accumulation of plasma proteins. Genetic influences, foetal exposures and early life events may contribute to structural changes such as subepithelial fibrosis from an early age. Other structural alterations are related to duration of the disease and long-term uncontrolled inflammation. Structural changes may increase alteration of the protective functions of the upper airways namely by affecting mucociliary clearance and conditioning of inspired air. The sequences of tissue changes during wound repair of upper airway mucosa after surgery are illustrative of the complexicity of tissue modelling and remodelling and could be considered as an important source of information for a better understanding of the complex relationship between inflammatory reaction, of the subsequent tissue damages and fibroblast metabolism of upper airways.