Chronic rhinosinusitis is one of the most common health care challenges, with significant direct medical costs and severe impact on lower airway disease and general health outcomes. The diagnosis of chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) currently is based on clinical signs, nasal endoscopy and CT scanning, and therapeutic recommendations are focussing on 2 classes of drugs, corticosteroids and antibiotics. A better understanding of the pathogenesis and the factors amplifying mucosal inflammation therefore seems to be crucial for the development of new diagnostic and therapeutic tools. In an effort to extend knowledge in this area, the WP 2.7.2 of the GA(2)LEN network of excellence currently collects data and samples of 1000 CRS patients and 250 control subjects. The main objective of this project is to characterize patients with upper airway disease on the basis of clinical parameters, infectious agents, inflammatory mechanisms and remodeling processes. This collaborative research will result in better knowledge on patient phenotypes, pathomechanisms, and subtypes in chronic rhinosinusitis. This review summarizes the state of the art on chronic rhinosinusitis and nasal polyposis in different aspects of the disease. It defines potential gaps in the current research, and points to future research perspectives and targets.