Blood eosinophil counts and the development of obstructive lung disease: the Kangbuk Samsung Health Study.

The impact of blood eosinophil counts on the development of chronic obstructive lung disease (COPD) is unknown. We investigated whether a higher blood eosinophil counts was associated with the risk of developing obstructive lung disease (OLD) in a large cohort of men and women free lung disease at baseline.Cohort study of 359 456 Korean adults without a history of asthma and without OLD at baseline who participated in health screening exams including spirometry. OLD was defined as pre-bronchodilator FEV1/FVC<0.7 and FEV1<80% predicted.After a median follow-up of 5.6 years (interquartile range, 2.9-9.2), 5008 participants developed incident OLD (incidence rate, 2.1 per 1000 person-years; 95% CI, 2.1-2.2). In the fully-adjusted model, the HR (95% CI) for incident OLD comparing eosinophil counts of 100-<200, 200-<300, 300-<500 and ≥500 cells·μL-1 to <100 cells·μL-1 were 1.07 (1.00-1.15), 1.30 (1.20-1.42), 1.46 (1.33-1.60) and 1.72 (1.51-1.95) (p for trend <0.001). These associations were consistent in clinically relevant subgroups, including never, former, and current smokers.In this large longitudinal cohort study, blood eosinophil counts were positively associated with the risk of developing of OLD. Our findings indicate a potential role of eosinophil count as an independent risk factor for developing COPD.

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Authors: Hye Yun Park, Yoosoo Chang, Danbee Kang, Yun Soo Hong, Di Zhao, Jiin Ahn, Sun Hye Shin, Dave Singh, Eliseo Guallar, Juhee Cho, Seungho Ryu