What are the cellular elements of the airways of the lungs, and which dysfunction leads to bronchial asthma?

Updated: Nov 20, 2020
  • Author: Michael J Morris, MD, FACP, FCCP; Chief Editor: Zab Mosenifar, MD, FACP, FCCP  more...
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Cellular elements include mast cells, which are involved in the complex control of releasing histamine and other mediators. Basophils, eosinophils, neutrophils, and macrophages also are responsible for extensive mediator release in the early and late stages of bronchial asthma. Stretch and irritant receptors reside in the airways, as do cholinergic motor nerves, which innervate the smooth muscle and glandular units. In bronchial asthma, smooth muscle contraction in an airway is greater than that expected for its size if it were functioning normally, and this contraction varies in its distribution.

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