The diagnosis of asthma is currently based on clinical history, physical examination and lung function, and to date, there are no accurate objective tests either to confirm the diagnosis or to discriminate between different types of asthma. This consensus exercise reviews the state of the art in asthma diagnosis to identify opportunities for future investment based on the likelihood of their successful development, potential for widespread adoption and their perceived impact on asthma patients. Using a two-stage e-Delphi process and a summarizing workshop, a group of European asthma experts including health professionals, researchers, people with asthma and industry representatives ranked the potential impact of research investment in each technique or tool for asthma diagnosis and monitoring. After a systematic review of the literature, 21 statements were extracted and were subject of the two-stage Delphi process. Eleven statements were scored 3 or more and were further discussed and ranked in a face-to-face workshop. The three most important diagnostic/predictive tools ranked were as follows: “New biological markers of asthma (eg genomics, proteomics and metabolomics) as a tool for diagnosis and/or monitoring,” “Prediction of future asthma in preschool children with reasonable accuracy” and “Tools to measure volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in exhaled breath.”.

The EARIP Collaboration,
Clinical and Experimental Allergy
Department of Pediatrics

Garcia-Marcos, L., Edwards, J. (J.), Kennington, E. (E.), Aurora, P., Baraldi, E., Carraro, S., … Walker, S. (S.). (2018). Priorities for future research into asthma diagnostic tools. Clinical and Experimental Allergy (Vol. 48, pp. 104–120). doi:10.1111/cea.13080