Dr. Juan Celedón, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

Asthma is the most common chronic respiratory disease and a major public health problem in high income nations. In the United States and Canada, economically disadvantaged individuals and members of certain racial or ethnic minority groups are disproportionately affected by asthma. Such health disparities in asthma are multifactorial, involving complex interactions between heredity and environment. In this presentation, novel research findings suggesting causal roles for genetic and epigenetic variation, psychosocial stress, vitamin D insufficiency, and obesity in asthma among underserved populations will be critically assessed. Feasible approaches to reducing existing health disparities in asthma will also be discussed.

Learning Objectives
At the end of this presentation, attendees will be able to:

  • briefly review the genetics and epigenetics of asthma in minority populations;
  • assess the impact of environmental and behavioral risk factors on asthma; and
  • discuss new approaches to reduce health care disparities in asthma.