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New ISAR Research Sheds Light on Asthma Exacerbation Rates: Great Variability Found Across Nations

The International Severe Asthma Registry is a global collaborative initiative to gather anonymous, longitudinal, real-life data for patients with severe asthma. ISAR offers a rich source of real-life data for scientific research to understand and improve symptoms, treatments, and patient outcomes for severe asthma.

The latest breakthrough research from the ISAR, as detailed in the recent publication in Chest, has unveiled an interesting landscape of variability in severe asthma exacerbation rates across diverse countries.

Led by a diverse team of researchers, including Dr. Tae Yoon Lee and senior authors Prof. Wenjia Chen and Prof. Mohsen Sadatsafavi, this multinational study meticulously analysed data from biologic-naïve patients across 17 countries participating in ISAR, with a specific focus on asthma exacerbation rates and their inherent between-country variations.

The findings showed that individuals sharing similar patient characteristics, yet coming from different countries, had greatly varied rates of severe exacerbation. ranging between 0.04 in Argentina to 0.88 in Saudi Arabia (interquartile range: 0.13–0.54). Remarkably, these variations persist even after rigorous adjustments for patient- and disease characteristics and sampling variability (interquartile range: 0.16–0.39).

These findings highlight the presence of unidentified patient-specific factors and/or systemic intricacies contributing to the observed variations. It is imperative that disease management guidelines acknowledge and address such between-country variability. To optimize treatment strategies effectively, there is a pressing need for the development of risk prediction models calibrated specifically for each jurisdiction.

To learn more about the study, please read the full paper in Chest, as well as the accompanying slide deck.

Acknowledgement: This research project is supported by the Ministry of Education, Singapore, under the Academic Research Fund Tier 1 (FY2022—2025).


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