Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Salbutamol asthma inhaler will not prevent attacks for one in 10 children

  • Comment

One in 10 children using a salbutamol inhaler to treat asthma may have a gene mutation with stops the medication from preventing attacks, research has found.

Salbutamol, known by the brand name Ventolin or as the ‘blue’ inhaler, may be ineffective for 100,000 children with a gene mutation called Arg16.

Researchers from the University of Dundee and Brighton and Sussex Medical School found that the gene change made children 30% more likely to suffer asthma attacks that cannot be controlled by the inhaler. The more they used salbutamol, the less effective it became.

Experts stressed that parents should not panic and children should carry on taking salbutamol until more research is carried out. In the future, it may be possible to detect the gene change through a simple saliva test.

Professor Somnath Mukhopadhyay, from Brighton and Sussex Medical School, who took part in the research, said that poorly controlled asthma is a major problem for children, necessitating frequent visits to doctors and hospitals and time off school.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.