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Dual therapy strategies for COPD: the scientific rationale for LAMA + LABA

Authors Cohen J, Miles MC, Donohue J, Ohar J

Received 29 May 2015

Accepted for publication 29 August 2015

Published 15 April 2016 Volume 2016:11(1) Pages 785—797

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/COPD.S54513

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Professor Hsiao-Chi Chuang

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Russell


Joshua S Cohen,1 Matthew C Miles,2 James F Donohue,3 Jill A Ohar2

1United Lung and Sleep Clinic, Saint Paul, MN, USA; 2Department of Internal Medicine, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC, USA; 3University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC, USA

Abstract: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a leading cause of morbidity, mortality, and health care expenditure worldwide. Relaxation of airway smooth muscle with inhaled bronchodilators is the cornerstone of treatment for stable COPD, with inhaled corticosteroids reserved for those with a history of exacerbations. Tiotropium has occupied center stage in COPD treatment for over 10 years and improves lung function, quality of life, exercise endurance, and reduces the risk of COPD exacerbation. Long-acting β2-agonists (LABAs) improve lung function, reduce dynamic hyperinflation, increase exercise tolerance, health-related quality of life, and reduce acute exacerbation of COPD. The combination of long-acting muscarinic antagonists (LAMAs) and LABAs is thought to leverage different pathways to induce bronchodilation using submaximal drug doses, increasing the benefits and minimizing receptor-specific side effects. Umeclidinium/vilanterol is the first combination of LAMA/LABA to be approved for use in stable COPD in USA and Europe. Additionally, indacaterol/glycopyrronium and aclidinium/formoterol have been approved in Europe and in numerous locations outside USA. Several other agents are in the late stages of development, most of which offer once-daily dosing. The benefits of new LAMA/LABA combinations include improved pulmonary function, dyspnea, and health-related quality of life, and in some cases, reduced exacerbations. These evolving treatments will provide new opportunities and challenges in the management of COPD.

Keywords: bronchodilator, fixed-dose combination, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, COPD treatment

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