Acute and chronic lung disease remains a major health burden worldwide. Our understanding of the pathophysiology of the many lung diseases remains inadequate and drug therapy for many diseases such as lung injury or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has limited efficacy.
Clinical respiratory research in Birmingham centres on inflammatory mechanisms underlying lung injury and fibrosis in disorders including acute lung injury, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, vasculitis and interstitial lung disease. Basic science themes include lung epithelial cell biology, the effects of aging upon neutrophil function and local endocrine systems within the lung. Translational studies are investigating the importance of vitamin D deficiency in lung diseases such as COPD and Acute lung injury, modification of neutrophil function with statins, as well as alpha one anti-trypsin deficiency. There is a strong respiratory epidemiology and physiology interest which has recently been expanded into genetic linkage studies. Clinical trials are both investigator-led and pharmaceutically-funded in acute lung injury (treatment and prevention), asthma, COPD, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, sepsis and Tuberculosis.