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Journal of Allergy
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 163089, 6 pages
Research Article

The Heterogeneity of Asthma Phenotypes in Children and Young Adults

1Department of Pediatrics, Institute of Clinical Sciences, Sahlgrenska Academy, 41685 Gothenburg, Sweden
2Queen Silvia Children’s Hospital, 41685 Gothenburg, Sweden
3Nordic School of Public Health, 40242 Gothenburg, Sweden
4Rheumatology Unit, Department of Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, 17176 Stockholm, Sweden
5Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Institute of Biomedicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, Gothenburg, Sweden

Received 8 October 2011; Revised 16 January 2012; Accepted 7 February 2012

Academic Editor: Massimo Triggiani

Copyright © 2012 Bill Hesselmar et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. Genetic heterogeneity and risk factor distribution was analyzed in two previously proposed asthma phenotypes. Method. A sample of 412 subjects was investigated at 7-8, 12-13, and 21-22 years of age with questionnaires, skin prick tests, and genetic analysis of IL-4 receptor (IL4R) single-nucleotide polymorphisms. The sample was subdivided in one group with no asthma, and two groups with asthma separated by age of onset of symptoms, namely, early onset asthma (EOA) and late onset asthma (LOA). Risk factors and IL4R markers were analyzed in respect to asthma phenotypes. Results. EOA and LOA groups were both associated with atopy and a maternal history of asthma. Female gender was more common in LOA, whereas childhood eczema, frequent colds in infancy, and a paternal history of asthma were more common in EOA. The AA genotype of rs2057768 and the GG genotype of rs1805010 were more common in LOA, whereas the GG genotype of rs2107356 was less common in EOA. Conclusion. Our data suggest that early and late onset asthma may be of different endotypes and genotypes.