Dr Hubert Lam PhD

Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Lecturer In Environmental And Occupational Epidemiology

Contact details

Occupational and Environmental Medicine
School of Health and Population Sciences
College of Medical and Dental Sciences
University of Birmingham
Birmingham, B15 2TT

Hubert Lam is Lecturer in Environmental and Occupational Epidemiology.

He joined the Institute of Occupational and Environmental Medicine in 2009 and started his research in the fields of occupational and environmental epidemiology, and respiratory medicine. He advocates the multidisciplinary approach and has extensive collaborative work with other researchers in the UK, Hong Kong and China.


  • PhD in Epidemiology 2009
  • MPhil in Medical Sciences 2004
  • BSc (Hons) in Biochemistry 2002


Hubert Lam read biochemistry in the Chinese University of Hong Kong and obtained a first class BSc degree in 2002. He then received further training in basic biomedical laboratory, focusing on the apoptotic pathways of acute megakaryocytic leukaemia cells, which earned him a MSc degree in Medical Sciences in 2004. He moved to the University of Birmingham in 2005 to study for a PhD in Epidemiology. He was involved in the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study (GBCS), a collaborative project with the University of Hong Kong and the Guangzhou Number 12 People’s Hospital in China. Hubert was awarded a PhD in 2009 for his work in the epidemiology of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in a Chinese population.

He joined the Institute of Occupational and Environmental Medicine to take up a lecturer position in 2009. COPD remained to be a significant theme Hubert’s research, but he also started his research into environmental and occupational epidemiology.

Hubert has strong interest in teaching. He is the lead of the Epidemiology, Statistics and Research Methods module in the MSc Occupational Health course. He is dedicated to improve the learning and teaching outcomes by introducing enquiry based learning in his lectures.


Teaching Programmes

Postgraduate supervision

Hubert supervises a number of MSc dissertation projects every year. He is also co-supervising a doctoral project on the reanalysis of time-series studies on the health effects of air pollution.



Environmental Health and Epidemiology, Occupational Health and Epidemiology, Respiratory Health


Air pollution - The Delta Study

Time-series studies have demonstrated associations between short-term exposure to outdoor air pollution and adverse health effects. These studies use absolute concentrations of pollutants. Humans are, however, also physiologically sensitive to changes in state. In collaboration with the St. George’s, University of London (Dr Richard Atkinson and Prof. Ross Anderson), the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (Prof. Ben Armstrong) and the University of Hong Kong (Prof. CM Wong), Prof. Jon Ayres and Hubert propose to investigate whether the differences between pollutant levels over time (i.e. on a day-to-day basis) in time series studies would produce different exposure response functions. A PhD student has been appointed and the project is underway.

Effect of work on health - The APPRENTICE Study
Effects of work on health are well-documented but little is known about those entering the workplace for the first time (when lack of experience is important). Together with the University of Bristol (Profs. John Henderson, Glyn Lewis and Paul Gregg), the University of Aberdeen (Dr Sean Semple) and the Imperial College (Prof. Paul Cullinan), Prof. Jon Ayres and Hubert has successfully obtained funding for an observational study aiming to investigate the pre-employment self-selection of jobs, the lead time for the onset of illnesses, and the immediate effect of work on health (and vice versa) among young people entering the workforce for the first time.

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
Hubert has contributed in the spirometry data collection, quality assurance and analysis in the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study, resulting in the publication of a number of papers. He continues the collaboration work with Prof. KK Cheng and Dr Peymane Adab and is now in preparation to set up a COPD subcohort in China. Hubert also works with Prof. Robert Maynard of the Health Protection Agency on a report to be published by the Committee on the Medical Effects of Air Pollutants (COMEAP).

Other activities

Honorary research associate, School of Public Health, The University of Hong Kong

Member of UK Indoor Environments Group (UKIEG)


Jordan RE, Lam K-bH, Cheng KK, Miller MR, Marsh JL, Ayres JG, Fitzmaurice D, Adab P. (2010) Case finding for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: a model foroptimising a targeted approach. Thorax, 65: 492-498.

Lam KB, Kurmi OP, Ayres JG. (2010) Indoor air pollution – a poorly recognised hazard. Diversity in Health and Care, 7: 5-7.

Lam KH, Jiang CQ, Thomas GN, Arora T, Zhang WS, Taheri S, Adab P, Lam TH, Cheng KK. (2010) Napping and type 2 diabetes: the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study. Sleep, 33: 402-407.

Lam KH, Jiang CQ, Jordan RE, Miller MR, Zhang WS, Cheng KK, Lam TH, Adab P. (2010) Prior tuberculosis, smoking and airflow obstruction: A cross-sectional analysis of the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study. Chest, 137: 593-600.

Lam K-BH, Jordan RE, Jiang CQ, Thomas GN, Miller MR, Zhang WS, Lam TH, Cheng KK, Adab P. (2010) Airflow obstruction and the metabolic syndrome: the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study. European Respiratory Journal, 35: 317-323.

Zhang WS, Jiang CQ, Cheng KK, Adab P, Thomas GN, Liu B, Lam KB, Schooling CM, Lam TH. (2009) Alcohol sensitivity, alcohol use and hypertension in an older Chinese population – the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study. Hypertension Research, 32: 741-747.

Yin P, Jiang CQ, Cheng KK, Lam TH, Lam KH, Miller MR, Zhang WS, Thomas GN, Adab P. (2007) Passive smoking exposure and risk of COPD among adults in China: The Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study. Lancet, 370: 751-757.