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Claims for Patent: 5,817,028

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Claims for Patent: 5,817,028

Title: Method and device for the provocation of air passage narrowing and/or the induction of sputum
Abstract:A method as described for testing the susceptibility of a person to asthma. The person inhales an effective amount of sodium chloride, mannitol or another substance capable of altering the osmolarity of airway surface liquid in the subject. The substance is in the form of a dispersible dry powder containing an effective proportion of particles of a respirable size. The subject is then measured to detect airway narrowing which is indicative of a propensity for asthma. The same technique of dry powder inhalation can be used to test for the susceptibility of a person to rhinitus, to induce sputum and promote mucociliary clearance.
Inventor(s): Anderson; Sandra Doreen (Birchgrove, AU)
Assignee: Central Sydney Area Health Service (Camperdown, AU)
Application Number:08/696,987
Patent Claims: 1. A method for attempting to provoke airway narrowing in a subject comprising the steps of (a) causing the subject to inhale into subject's airways an effective amount of a substance capable of increasing the osmolarity of airway surface liquid in the subject, which substance is in the form of a dry dispersable powder, other than a dry powder dissolved in a liquid, containing an effective proportion of particles of a respirable size, and (b) measuring in the subject a parameter indicative of the resistance to air flow of the subject's airway.

2. A method as claimed in claim 1 in which the subject is caused to inhale the substance into the airways of a lung.

3. A method as claimed in claim 1 in which the subject is caused to inhale the substance into a nasal airway.

4. A method as claimed in claim 1 in which the substance is selected from the group comprising mineral salts, sugars and sugar alcohols.

5. A method as claimed in claim 4 in which the substance is selected from the group comprising salts of sodium or potassium, hexose and pentose sugars and their corresponding sugar alcohols.

6. A method as claimed in claim 5 in which the substance is selected from the group comprising sodium chloride, potassium chloride, mannitol and dextrose.

7. A method as claimed in claim 1 in which an effective quantity of the dry particles have a maximum dimension of seven microns.

8. A method as claimed in claim 1 in which the proportion of the particles having a respirable size is at least 10% by weight of the substance, preferably at least 25%, more preferably at least 40% and most preferably at least 50%.

9. A method as claimed in claim 1 in which the parameter indicative of airway narrowing that is measured comprises measuring a reduction in forced expiratory volume in one second.

10. A method as claimed in claim 1 in which the substance is packaged in a rupturable hard capsule.

11. A method as claimed in claim 10 in which the capsule contains from 1 to 100 mg of the substance, preferably 5 to 40 mg.

12. A method for increasing mucociliary clearance or inducing sputum comprising the step of causing a subject to inhale into the subject's airways an effective amount of a substance capable of increasing the osmolarity of airway surface liquid, the substance being in the form of a dispersible dry powder, other than a dry powder dissolved in a liquid, containing an effective proportion of particles of a respirable size.

13. A method as claimed in claim 12 in which the subject is caused to inhale the substance into the airways of a lung.

14. A method as claimed in claim 12 in which the subject is caused to inhale the substance into a nasal airway.

15. A method as claimed in claim 12 in which the substance is selected from the group comprising mineral salts, sugars and sugar alcohols.

16. A method as claimed in claim 15 in which the substance is selected from the group comprising salts of sodium or potassium, hexose and pentose sugars and their corresponding sugar alcohols.

17. A method as claimed in claim 16 in which the substance is selected from the group comprising sodium chloride, potassium chloride, mannitol and dextrose.

18. A method as claimed in claim 12 in which an effective quantity of the dry particles have a maximum dimension of seven microns.

19. A method as claimed in claim 12 in which the proportion of the particles having a respirable size is at least 10% by weight of the substance, preferably at least 25%, more preferably at least 40% and most preferably at least 50%.

20. A method as claimed in claim 12 in which the substance is packaged in a rupturable hard capsule.

21. A method as claimed in claim 20 in which the capsule contains from 1 to 100 mg of the substance, preferably 5 to 40 mg.
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