Volunteers needed to optimise steroid doses in patients with asthma

We are looking for volunteers aged 18 to 80, with a diagnosis of asthma to take part in a new research aiming to improve use of steroids in patients with severe asthma.


RASP study

Many people with severe asthma are routinely prescribed medicine containing corticosteroids (steroids) to help control their symptoms. However, high doses of steroids can potentially lead to side-effects, making lower doses preferable for maintaining individuals’ quality of life – a difficult balance to achieve.

In Refractory Asthma Stratification Programme (RASP) study, we aim to explore if doses of steroids (both inhaled and oral) can be optimised in patients with severe asthma, without causing a worsening of the asthma symptoms.

We hope to identify those patients who benefit from higher doses of steroids and those who do not. This will be done by looking at markers of asthma in their blood and exhaled breath, and by using these to optimise the steroid dose. In addition, identifying which symptoms and aspects of asthma do not respond well to steroid treatment may allow drug companies to develop new treatments for asthma.

This study is part of a larger programme of studies, called RASP-UK. It is being conducted by a group of clinical and academic experts from UK Universities and NHS Severe Asthma Centres, together with pharmaceutical companies with an interest in asthma.

Taking part

We are recruiting people in the UK to programmes like RASP-UK who:

  • Are aged 18 to 80, with a diagnosis of asthma
  • Take a number of inhaled medications plus occasional or regular oral corticosteroids
  • Have a smoking history of less  than 15 pack years

This type of study has two stages:

  1. Screening (up to 2 weeks)
  2. Single-blind study period (up to 48 weeks).

Participants in such trials have an equal chance of being randomly selected to be put into the blood and breath marker group or the usual group. At no point will your safety or care be compromised.

Travel expenses for clinic visits that are additional to usual appointments will be provided.

Contact us

If you would like to find more information, please contact Yvette Thirlwall or Gabriela Grumazescu, or contact us on 02381208427 or 0238120449. Please note that enquiring about participation does not commit you to taking part in our trials in any way.


See also