Author(s): Couto M, de Diego A, Perpii M, Delgado L, Moreira A
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Abstract A high parasympathetic tone leading to bronchoconstriction and neurogenic inflammation is thought to have a major role in the pathogenesis of asthma. Transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) is the hub of almost all neuronal inflammatory signaling pathways. A critical determinant of neurogenic inflammation, TRPV1 functions as a sensor for detecting irritants in the lung by transmitting noxious stimuli to the central nervous system and inducing the release of a variety of proinflammatory neuropeptides at the peripheral terminals. Challenge with inhaled capsaicin, an exogenous agonist of TRPV1, has been used to measure the sensitivity of the cough reflex. However, inhalation of capsaicin is also associated with parasympathetic bronchoconstriction, mucus hypersecretion, vasodilatation, and the sensation of dyspnea. Therefore, inhaled capsaicin challenge is expected to have other potential applications in asthma and comorbid conditions, such as rhinitis and gastroesophageal reflux disease, both of which produce cough. Capsaicin challenge has established itself as a useful objective method for evaluating airway hypersensitivity; however, it is potentially valuable in many other situations, which will be reviewed in this paper.
This article was published in J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol
and referenced in Alternative & Integrative Medicine