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Does Cinqair treat all types of asthma?

Medically reviewed by Carmen Pope, BPharm. Last updated on Feb 20, 2023.

Official answer


Cinqair (reslizumab) is an interleukin-5 (IL-5) antagonist monoclonal antibody (IgG4 kappa), which is only used to treat a certain type of asthma.

Cinqair is given by intravenous injection every four weeks. It has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as an add-on maintenance therapy to treat patients with severe asthma, aged 18 years and older, who have an eosinophilic phenotype. People continue to take their other asthma medications while on Cinqair.

Cinqair is not used to treat other types of asthma, other eosinophilic conditions, or used as a rescue medication for asthma attacks.

Eosinophils are cells that are part of the immune system. In eosinophilic types of asthma the number of eosinophils in the blood, lung tissue and mucus coughed up from the respiratory tract (sputum) is increased. Eosinophils can contribute to damaging effects of inflammation.

How does Cinqair work in eosinophilic asthma?

Cinqair is an IL-5 antagonist. IL-5 is a cytokine, which is a signaling protein that enables cells to talk to one another. It is specifically responsible for the growth, differentiation, recruitment, activation and survival of eosinophils.

Cinqair works by binding to the IL-5 receptor of the surface of eosinophils, which stops the eosinophil cells from increasing in number and helps to reduce the inflammation that is thought to contribute to eosinophilic asthma.

Cinqair helps to reduce the number of exacerbations - flare-ups - people have of their asthma. It also helps to improve lung function.


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