Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hopkins Research May Bring "Sigh" Of Relief To Asthmatics

Date:
August 11, 2000
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Summary:
For several years, researchers have known that deep breaths benefit the lungs of healthy individuals by pushing open narrowed airways. Now, Johns Hopkins researchers have discovered that deep breaths also provide protection by preventing airways from closing in the first place. The findings may lead to a real sigh of relief and new treatments for asthmatics.

For several years, researchers have known that deep breaths benefit the lungs of healthy individuals by pushing open narrowed airways. Now, Johns Hopkins researchers have discovered that deep breaths also provide protection by preventing airways from closing in the first place. The findings may lead to a real sigh of relief and new treatments for asthmatics.

Related Articles


"Understanding the protective effects of sighing may give us therapeutic options for asthmatics in the future," says Alkis Togias, M.D., an associate professor of clinical immunology and principal investigator of the study, which appears in the August issue of the Journal of Applied Physiology.

For years, scientists have used the drug methacholine to study asthma because it narrows airways and causes wheezing in asthmatics, but not in healthy people. Then, in 1995, Hopkins researchers discovered that if people with healthy lung function took only shallow breaths before inhaling the drug, their lungs behaved more like those belonging to asthmatics, and breathing was difficult. With further study, the researchers found that deep breaths help open airways after they close.

To investigate whether deep breathing might bestow other protective effects, Togias and his colleagues exposed nine healthy volunteers and eight asthmatics to methacholine. At first, the volunteers were asked not to inhale deeply for 20 minutes before taking the drug. Then, the investigators gauged airway openness by having the volunteers breathe into a tube and measuring the speed and quantity of air exhaled. The test was then repeated, but this time the volunteers were instructed to take five deep breaths before inhaling the drug.

While breathing deeply did not affect airway openness in asthmatics, it reduced the adverse effects of methacholine in healthy individuals by 85 percent. "Before this study, we knew that deep breaths helped open airways after they closed," says Togias. "Now we know that deep breaths protect the airways from closing in the first place."

The scientists speculate that deep breaths may stretch lung tissue, which then causes the release of a protective chemical that keeps airways open. "If we could figure out what that substance was, perhaps we could provide it to asthmatics via a drug," says Togias.

###

For more information about asthma and allergy research at Johns Hopkins, visit http://www.hopkins-allergy.org.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Hopkins Research May Bring "Sigh" Of Relief To Asthmatics." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 August 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/08/000807062850.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. (2000, August 11). Hopkins Research May Bring "Sigh" Of Relief To Asthmatics. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 29, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/08/000807062850.htm
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Hopkins Research May Bring "Sigh" Of Relief To Asthmatics." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/08/000807062850.htm (accessed March 29, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

AFP (Mar. 28, 2015) Sierra Leone imposed a three-day nationwide lockdown Friday for the second time in six months in a bid to prevent a resurgence of the deadly Ebola virus. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) A popular class of antibiotic can leave patients in severe pain and even result in permanent nerve damage. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

AP (Mar. 27, 2015) The White House on Friday announced a five-year plan to fight the threat posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria amid fears that once-treatable germs could become deadly. (March 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

AP (Mar. 26, 2015) In rare bipartisan harmony, congressional leaders pushed a $214 billion bill permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts toward House passage Thursday, moving lawmakers closer to resolving a problem that has plagued them for years. (March 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins