In 2007 the EvA project was given a €3 million European Union grant to fund its groundbreaking research in COPD. The project brings together clinical medicine, radiology and image analysis and genetics including gene expression analysis, laboratory diagnostics and bioinformatics. The project differs from previous studies in that the two sub-phenotypes of COPD (either emphysema only or airway disease only) will be studied separately instead of grouping them together.
The concept of looking at Emphysema only versus Airway Disease only (EvA) is a novel one. It addresses a theme that has marred clinicians and researchers alike, in that many patients suffering from a disease consisting of a mix of sub-phenotypes are difficult to properly diagnose and treat and difficult to study in research projects. The sub-phenotypes will be defined using the novel computed tomography (CT) image analysis approach and will identify markers specific for emphysema and for airway disease in COPD. The possibility that smoking may induce somatic mutations in the bronchial epithelium of patients with A but not with E will also be addressed.
COPD patients and healthy volunteers who would like to take part in the project will be given a complete health check, including lung function tests. In order to determine the type of COPD a computed tomography (CT) examination will be carried out on patients. A bronchoscopy will be done in both patients and healthy volunteers in order to obtain a brush sample and to rinse a part of the lung with fluid. A blood sample will also be taken.
Do I qualify?
COPD patients should be ex-smokers and healthy volunteers should by over the age of 45 and ex- or never-smokers. If you are interested in participating, please visit the “Want to take part?” page.