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New £7m research unit aims to reduce lung disease deaths

Respire researchers will investigate long-term conditions including asthma.

By STV News

Published 01 Aug 2017.

A £7m global research initiative aimed at cutting deaths from lung disease has been launched.

Researchers aim to reduce the death toll from lung conditions as well as mitigating the impact they have on daily life.

Teams will investigate long-term conditions including asthma, lung cancer and chronic obstructive lung disease (COPD) alongside studying infectious respiratory diseases such as pneumonia.

Respire, a new Global Research Unit on Respiratory Health at Edinburgh University, will be established with the funding from the National Institute for Health Research.

Staff at the new unit will work with groups in Bangladesh, India, Malaysia and Pakistan to identify key challenges in these areas since lung diseases account for one in five deaths in South Asia, and to ensure potential interventions are fit for purpose around the world.

They are also setting up training programmes for research teams in the four countries to enable them to conduct research into respiratory illnesses.

Respire co-director Professor Aziz Sheikh said: "Respire will enable us to accelerate and extend our work with low and middle income country partners around the world to tackle major respiratory health challenges faced by the world's most deprived populations."