ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
Know Your Asthma Triggers
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Traditional Chinese Therapy May Help Ease Eczema
Relaxation Tapes or Mozart Lower Blood Pressure
Maggots as Good as Gel in Leg Ulcer Treatments
ANIMAL CARE
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Safe Toys for Dogs
Beware of Dog Bites
BONES & JOINTS
A Winning Strategy to Beat Spring Sporting Injuries
Soccer's a Winner for Building Bone Health in Girls
Vitamin D Plus Calcium Guards Against Fractures
CANCER
Vitamin C Shows Promise as Cancer Treatment
Hypnosis Cuts Hot Flashes for Breast Cancer Survivors
Vitamin D May Improve Melanoma Survival
CAREGIVING
With Alzheimer's, Health-Care Costs Could Triple
Moms Who Breast-Feed Less Likely to Neglect Child
Recession Scrambling Health Spending in U.S.
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
A Brisk Pace May Keep Stroke at Bay
Migraines in Pregnancy Boost Vascular Risks
Bad Marriages Harder on Women's Health
COSMETIC
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
DENTAL, ORAL
Gum Disease Might Boost Cancer Risk
Rheumatoid Arthritis May Harm Gums
Periodontal Disease Impacts Whole Health
DIABETES
Fructose-Sweetened Drinks Up Metabolic Syndrome Risk
Older Diabetics With Depression Face Higher Death Rate
Fish Twice a Week Cuts Diabetics' Kidney Risks
DIET, NUTRITION
Imagine Food Aromas That Prevent Overeating
Dark Chocolate May Lower Stroke Risk
Purple Tomato Extended Lives of Cancer-Prone Mice
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Bed Bugs Bring No Disease Danger
Traffic Seems to Make Kids' Asthma Worse
Hairspray Exposure Ups Risk for Birth Defect in Sons
EYE CARE, VISION
High Temps Degrade Contact Lens Solution: Study
Kids' Eye Injuries From Golf Clubs Rare But Severe
Eye Problems, Hearing Loss May Be Linked
FITNESS
Maximize Your Run
Community Exercise Programs Boost Seniors' Strength
Consciousness Helps the Mind and Body Work Together
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
New Yogurt May Ease Stomach Ulcers
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
GENERAL HEALTH
New Methods Could Speed Production of Flu Vaccines
Eating More Soy May Be Good For Your Lung Function
When It Comes to Lifting, the Pros Have Your Back
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
Airport Full Body Scanners Pose No Health Threat: Experts
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Ginkgo Won't Prevent Heart Attack, Stroke in Elderly
Fewer Heart Attacks After England Goes Smoke-Free
Too Much Red Meat May Shorten Life Span
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Poor Restroom Cleaning Causes Cruise-Ship Sickness
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Fussy Babys Could Be Out Of Your Control
Pregnant Women Exposed To Certain Pollutants Could Lower Childs IQ
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
MEN'S HEALTH
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
Countdown to Hair Loss
Drinking Green Tea May Slow Prostate Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Consciousness Helps the Mind and Body Work Together
Estrogen May Help Men's Hearts
The Unmedicated Mind
PAIN
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Before Conceiving, Take Folic Acid for One Full Year
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
SENIORS
Seniors Who Volunteer May Live Longer
Rapid Weight Loss in Seniors Signals Higher Dementia Risk
Older People at Greater Risk of Swine Flu Death
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Natural Therapies for Menopause
Mom and Baby Alike May Benefit From Exercise
Steady Weight Gain Boosts Late-Life Breast Cancer Risk
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Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma

TUESDAY, May 19 (HealthDay News) -- A substance secreted by eczema-damaged skin might trigger asthma in children, U.S. researchers suggest.

The theory comes from a study of mice with an eczema-like condition, which suggested that early treatment of eczema and inhibition of the trigger substance might help prevent asthma.

An estimated 50 percent to 70 percent of children with severe eczema, known as atopic dermatitis, develop asthma, compared with about 9 percent of children in the general population. In the United States, about 17 percent of children have eczema, although not all cases are severe.

The progression from eczema to asthma is called the atopic march.

"Over the years, the clinical community has struggled to explain atopic march," Raphael Kopan, a professor of developmental biology and dermatology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and an author of the study, said in a news release from the school.

"So, when we found that the skin of mice with an eczema-like condition produced a substance previously implicated in asthma, we decided to investigate further," Kopan said. "We found that the mice also suffered from asthma-like responses to inhaled allergens, implicating the substance, called TSLP, as the link between eczema and asthma."

The researchers found that TSLP (thylmic stromal lymphopoietin) is secreted by damaged skin to alert the body that the skin's protective barrier has failed. TSLP activates an immune response that fights invaders.

"We are excited, because we've narrowed down the problem of atopic march to one molecule," Kopan said. "We've shown that skin can act as a signaling organ and drive allergic inflammation in the lung by releasing TSLP. Now, it will be important to address how to prevent defective skin from producing TSLP."

"If that can be done," she said, "the link between eczema and asthma could be broken."

The study appears May 19 in the journal PLoS Biology.

More information

The American Academy of Dermatology has more about eczema.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, news release, May 18, 2009

Last Updated: May 19, 2009

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