Meet Asthma UK researcher Dr Hans Michael Haitchi

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , /

I’m Hans Michael Haitchi, I’m associate
professor in respiratory medicine at the University of Southampton. As a medical student I met a very nice girl on the train to university and there she later
became my wife but she suffers from asthma and asthma runs in her family she
has a sister who has quite severe asthma and one of her distant cousins actually
died of a severe asthma attack the research interests from my research
group is actually in the asthma gene Adam 33 and it is associated particularly with
the twitchiness of the airways of asthma I went to the United States to
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and we showed that this causes the remodelling
of the airways it changes the structure of the airways there are more muscle more
fibers and which we see typically in patients with asthma However this was independent of airway inflammation so there’s no inflammation
in these airways when we then arrested the gene arrested the protein stopped it
then we could see that these changes were completely reversed and these
findings make Adam 33 very interesting and important target as a new therapy
for asthma that might either prevent or even reverse the asthma pathology in
patients with asthma and this could be a single inhaler once a week or every two
weeks but it’s quite early still and we need to do still more preclinical
studies in mouse models this is really an exciting area because all our current
treatment for asthma treats either the inflammation or the symptoms however we
have no treatment that actually reverses asthma the structural changes or
prevents them developing early in life which would be called the disease
modifying treatment blocking Adam 33 the asthma gene
Adam 33 maybe a new treatment that actually prevents or actually reverses

One thought on “Meet Asthma UK researcher Dr Hans Michael Haitchi

  1. I read last month on the NHS website that there was no evidence that pollution causes asthma, I thought that the link was common knowledge so I even wrote them a complaint about this statement. Thankfully due to the media attention they have changed the NHS website to include pollution as a cause but why the hell should politics be involved with medical knowledge? Also the presumption that every attack is due to incorrect use of inhaler and I do not agree! Doctors say I take the medication perfectly until they want a bonus from a new asthma medication then all of a sudden I'm doing it wrong and I need a new prescription. Those horrible powder things that choke and set off the asthma. Been fighting this change but they keep changing it back, been going on 3 years now even though since the change every doctor says I am taking the medication correctly. Would be nice if we could buy inhalers, I see no point in controlling this medication when spares are essential. People have asthma on the weekends and evenings, most pumps don't give much warning that they are running out. Why control a medication that is not dangerous or addictive – it serves no purpose and I am certain lives would be saved. The amount of times I have gone to a railway lost and found to ask if an inhaler has been found, just get desperate when when running for the train triggers an attack and you know your pump is pretty much empty and prescriptions wont be ready until Monday 🙂

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