Inhaled statins could become a novel class of inhaler therapy for airway diseases such as asthma, suggests a new study published in the journal Physiological Reports.

Although prior research has supported the efficacy of statins as a treatment for asthma, questions regarding drug delivery to the lungs when taken orally. In this study, scientists developed a new method to measure statin levels in mice after treatment with inhaled statins and improvement in asthma symptoms. When administered as a spray, the drug was found to be nontoxic and delivered primarily to the lungs; the treatment reduced the airway’s sensitivity to allergens, had modest anti-inflammatory effects, and lowered overproduction of mucus in mice.

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While the optimal statin type and dose for treating asthma in humans has yet to be determined, the authors conclude that statins should be explored as a novel class of inhaler therapy in humans trials involving asthma patients.

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