The protein content in the sputum of nine patients with asthma was compared with that in 11 non-asthmatic patients by a method of gel electrophoresis. It was found that the albumin content was significantly higher in the sputum of the asthmatics than of the non-asthmatics (P<0·01). A further 11 asthmatic patients who were taking disodium cromoglycate (Intal) as part of their treatment had sputum albumin levels indistinguishable from the non-asthmatics. When patients with asthma were then studied serially, before and after disodium cromoglycate therapy, the albumin content returned to non-asthmatic levels within two days of starting treatment. It is suggested that disodium cromoglycate has a previously unrecognized action in altering sputum proteins.
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