Research Group "Lung Epidemiology" - Projects

Genetic markers of lung function and susceptibility

From epidemiological studies it is well-known that lung healthy subjects with poor lung function are at higher risk for developing lung diseases but the pathophysiological pathways are not well understood. In the framework of long-standing cooperations within international consortia such as SpiroMeta or CHARGE we seek to elucidate the genetic basis of respiratory function and diseases by the identification of genomic loci associated with lung health or impairment. Recently, we could show that the highest allelic risk score for poor lung function is associated with an almost fourfold increased risk for COPD. We aim to translate these findings into clinical settings for early identification of subjects with increased respiratory susceptibility for disease development and progression. Further, our results contribute to a better understanding of disease pathogenesis and will allow for personalized therapeutic strategies including the application of already known therapeutics currently not applied for treatment of lung diseases. Ongoing goals are to elucidate the epigenetic regulation pathways involved in lung function and COPD.

Study population:

KORA: KORA F4, KORA Age and follow-up surveys
COSYCONET: The German COPD cohort