An estimated 300 million persons worldwide suffer from asthma and it caused 250,000 deaths globally in 2009. The difference in prevalence among countries does not appear to be positively correlated with levels of urbanization or lifestyle factors. COPD is the third leading cause of death in the US and in 2030, it is expected that COPD will rank fourth worldwide in terms of mortality. The highest prevalence is estimated to be in Italy and Japan (11.3% and 11.1% prevalence rates, respectfully) due to heavy tobacco use in these countries. Both asthma and COPD remain active areas of clinical research. As of 2 January 2013, there were 189 and 82 industry studies recruiting asthma and COPD patients, respectfully. Over the previous three years, Quintiles, the world’s largest Contract Research Organization, has successfully conducted 55 Phase 2-3 asthma and COPD studies involving more than 2,300 sites which recruited over 19,300 subjects globally.
Vikki Brandi, PA, DHSc; I-Shan Chiang, MPH, MBA; Neil Leslie; Juan Gispert, MD