Although considerable progress has been made to understand the pathogenesis of OSA during the last three decades, further multidisciplinary research is required to establish a causal relationship of OSA to various organ dysfunctions. One area that may catch the attention of the sleep scientists is to unravel the role of metabolic dysfunction linking OSA to coronary artery disease, diabetes mellitus and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. In addition to these, research is needed to understand the effects of OSA on other organs as intermittent hypoxia is one of the main features of OSA. Randomized interventional studies with adequate follow-up and longitudinal studies, in future, shall answer many of the controversial issues in OSA. During the next 5 years, studies in basic sciences, epidemiology and clinical aspects may enable us to understand the molecular mechanisms, cause and effect relationship of morbidities, and new treatment strategies in OSA.
Expert Rev Resp Med. 2012;6(5):557-566. © 2012 Expert Reviews Ltd.