Renaud Louis - Biomarkers in asthma monitoring
Prof Dr Renaud LOUIS is full professor, academic head of the department of respiratory medicine at University of Liege and CHU of Liege, Belgium since 2004. He was president of the Belgian Thoracic Society from2013 until 2014. He served as secretary of the group 5.3 allergy and Immunology of the assembly 5 “Airway diseases” at the ERS from 2002 until 2005. He currently sits in the steering committee of the SHARP (ERS research project on Severe Asthma) and is co-chair of the current ERS task force on “Diagnosis in asthma in adults”. He has focused his clinical research on asthma for 30 years developing the technique of induced sputum as a research tool to investigate mechanisms of airway inflammation but also applying it in clinical practice as an aid to asthma management. He is currently running, together with Pr Dr Schleich, a busy asthma clinic at CHU Liege with more than 150 hundreds sere asthma patients receiving regular biologics. He has 307 peer reviewed publications.in Scopus with an H Index of 39. He was associate editor of International Journal of clinical practice (section respiratory medicine) and current associate editor of the European Respiratory Review.
Asthma is chronic airway disease characterized by symptoms of dyspnea, cough and wheezing associated with excessive fluctuation in airway caliber. Asthma was once considered as a homogeneous disease with a treatment strategy one size fits all. It is now recognized that different phenotypes exist under the umbrella asthma, which may give insights on prognosis and treatment responsiveness. This concept of asthma phenotype is in particular crucial for predicting response to inhaled corticoids and costly biologicals which have recently emerged in the treatment of the most severe cases of the disease. So far the most popular and clinically useful classification of inflammatory phenotype has been relying on sputum cell counts. This technique is however difficult to apply on a large scale because it is technically demanding and not yielding immediate results. Exhaled breath may be alternative. Measuring exhaled fraction of nitric oxide has proved to be useful in some extent and has open the way towards more complex breath assessment. There has been growing interest on breathomic as a means to approach airway cellular content and, perhaps, as a tool to drive treatment choice.