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Allergy and asthma

Initiation and regulation of allergic inflammation is influenced by many factors, including cell type, membrane receptors, and mediators generated. Furthermore, the altered response of targeted tissues (ie, airway smooth muscle) becomes important to the eventual expression of asthma. Finally, the genetic regulation and association of genetic polymorphisms has enhanced our understanding of host susceptibility. In this review key findings published in 2004 issues of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology are highlighted to demonstrate recent advances in these areas.