Clinical and inflammatory characteristics of patients with asthma in the Spanish MEGA project cohort

Manuel J. Rial*, Maria J. Álvarez-Puebla, Ebymar Arismendi, María L. Caballero, José A. Cañas, María J. Cruz, Francisco J. González-Barcala, Juan A. Luna, Carlos Martínez-Rivera, Joaquim Mullol, Xavier Muñoz, José M. Olaguibel, César Picado, Vicente Plaza, Santiago Quirce, Christian Romero-Mesones, Francisco Javier Salgado, Beatriz Sastre, Lorena Soto-Retes, Antonio ValeroMarcela Valverde, Joaquín Sastre, Victora del Pozo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: The MEGA (MEchanism underlying the Genesis and evolution of Asthma) project is a multicenter cohort study carried out in eight Spanish hospitals, gathering clinical, physiological, and molecular data from patients with asthma and multimorbidities in order to gain insight into the different physiopathological mechanisms involved in this disorder. Material and Methods: We report the baseline clinical and physiological characteristics and biomarker measures of adult participants in the project with the aim of better understanding the natural history and underlying mechanisms of asthma as well as the associated multimorbidities across different levels of severity. We carried out a detailed clinical examination, pulmonary function testing, measurement of fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO), blood counts, induced sputum, skin prick tests, chest computed tomography scan, asthma questionnaires, and multimorbidity assessment in 512 asthmatic patients. Results: When compared to patients with milder disease, severe asthmatic patients showed greater presence of symptoms, more exacerbations, lower asthma control, increased airflow obstruction, and higher frequency of chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps, severe rhinitis, anxiety and depression, gastroesophageal reflux, and bronchiectasis. Conclusion: The MEGA project succeeded in recruiting a high number of asthma patients, especially those with severe disease, who showed lower control and higher frequency of multimorbidities.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12001
JournalClinical and Translational Allergy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • Spanish: asma; biomarcadores; asma eosinofílica;inflamación; asma neutrofílica; fenotipos.
  • asthma
  • biomarkers
  • eosinophilic asthma
  • inflammation
  • neutrophilic asthma
  • phenotype


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