The Thoracic Society of ANZ


Home 5 Research Roundup 5 VOLUME 1.10 DECEMBER 2016

Research Roundup:

December 2016


Welcome Message

It is the end of another year and I trust everyone is busily writing their grant applications for 2017 award rounds. 

TSANZ is pleased to announce that Cystic Fibrosis Australia has opened their Australian Cystic Fibrosis Research Trust 2017 Innovation Grant and this can be accessed through the TSANZ Awards Submission Portal.

The TSANZ Respiratory Nurse Career Development Award for Indigenous Research and the AstraZeneca Grant-in-Aid for Severe Asthma Research are also both open until January 2017.

It has been another big year for TSANZ and we are well on the way for preparing for the 2017 ASM. Authors will soon hear about the outcome of their abstract submissions. The Research Committee now has more award applications to review than ever before, and awards have not even closed yet! It is great to see the respiratory research community continuing to grow.

Enjoy your December Research Roundup,

Prof Phil Hansbro

Chair, Research Sub-Committee

The following articles will take you to

Holy Grail:Understanding how Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis progresses. This month we speak to researcher Louise Organ from The Alfred Hospital in Melbourne about her work trying to understand how fibroblasts become dysregulated in IPF and how this process contributes to the progression of the disease. Read More.

Global COPD guidelines updated. Spirometry remains important for the diagnosis and assessment of COPD but its value in making treatment decisions has been downgraded in the latest version of the Global Strategy for the Diagnosis, Management and Prevention of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Read More.

Mycobacterium spreading among CF patients globally. Whole genome sequencing of multi-drug resistant Mycobacterium abscessus isolates has shown the organism is spreading worldwide in the cystic fibrosis community, possibly via cross-infection. In an interview with the limbic expert Professor Scott Bell said the findings highlight the need for robust infection control, patient segregation and adherence to screening guidelines. Read More.

Call to revisit COPD guidelines. A leading Australian thoracic specialist and researcher has called for a revision of current COPD criteria to include cough and sputum as red flags for the disease. Read More. 

+ Spirometry report highlights access issues. A new report into the use of spirometry in the diagnosis and management of chronic airways disease has highlighted “huge barriers” to access. Read More.

Make blue inhalers official. With more and more asthma and COPD inhalers flooding the market there is a pressing need to formalise the unofficial yet traditional colour coding convention for inhalers. Read More.

Lungs for Life Grant Bulletin

The Lungs for Life project has identified the following direct-to-researcher grants and awards due between now and the first quarter of 2017:

Sir Edward Dunlop Medical Research Foundation – closes 18 Jan 17

Thrasher Research Fund – Early Career Awards – closes 15 Mar 17

The Lasker Awards – closes 01 Feb 17

Cancer Council Queensland Senior Research Fellowships – closes 28 Feb 17

[Vic] Premier’s Award for Health and Medical Research – closes 10 Mar 17

Australian Government Cancer Australia Priority-driven Collaborative Cancer Research Scheme – closes 16 Mar 17

Research Project and Survey Requests

Reminder: Survey invitation for Nurses and Allied Health on advance care planning in COPD

Dear Colleague

Our research team is conducting a survey to understand Palliative Care Nurses, Respiratory Nurses, and Allied Health Professionals that work in respiratory care’s knowledge and practice around advance care planning in patients with COPD. From the results of this study we hope to develop educational resources to assist health professionals when caring for this patient group.

We invite you to participate in a survey, that should take only 10-15 minutes to complete. Several disciplines are represented in the overall survey, however you will be directed to only those questions relevant to your discipline.

Ethics approval has been granted for this study from the University of Sydney. All responses will be anonymous and confidential. No personal information that could identify you is being collected and your email address will not be linked to your survey response. Your consent to participate in this study is implied by completing the survey.

Further information about this research study is provided in the enclosed document [DOWNLOAD]. If you have any questions regarding this research, please do not hesitate to contact Dr Rebecca Disler directly. Thank you in advance for participating.

Please click on the link below to proceed to the survey. If the link fails to load automatically, please cut and paste it into your internet browser:

Kind regards

Dr Rebecca Disler | Senior Lecturer in Chronic Disease | The University of Sydney
Email:  | Tel: 0406 876 587

Dr Natasha Smallwood | Respiratory Physician Department of Respiratory Medicine | The Royal Melbourne Hospital
A/Prof Louis Irving | Respiratory Physician Department of Respiratory Medicine | The Royal Melbourne Hospital
Prof David Currow | Palliative Care Physician Flinders University | Adelaide

Yuxiu Cui will be analysing the anonymous study results as the basis for her degree of Bachelor of Advanced Nursing (Honours) at The University of Sydney. This will take place under the supervision of Dr Rebecca Disler.

Acceptability and Perceived Benefit of Prehabilitation amongst Thoracic surgeons throughout Australia

Dear TSANZ members

This survey is being conducted to determine the Acceptability and Perceived Benefit of Prehabilitation amongst Thoracic Surgeons throughout Australia. It is part of a larger research project looking at the benefits of prehabilitation for individuals having lung cancer surgery in Australia.

This survey is open to thoracic surgeons currently practicing in Australia and New Zealand.

Your help in completing this survey is greatly appreciated. It is hoped that the results of this survey will assist the direction of future research into exercise interventions for patients with lung cancer.

It is anticipated this survey will take approximately 10 – 15 minutes to complete. Responses to this survey are anonymous and will remain confidential. All responses are voluntary. Completion of the survey will indicate your consent to participate. Please follow the link below to complete the survey online.

For further information or assistance with completing this survey please contact Anna Shukla (Senior Cardiorespiratory Physiotherapist – St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne):


This research has been approved by the School Of Health Sciences Human Research Ethics Advisory group (Ethics I.D 1646932) at the University of Melbourne.


Barriers and Facilitators to Optimal use of Acute Oxygen Therapy in Adults

Dear colleagues,

Our research  team is conducting a study to investigate the  barriers, facilitators and attitudes of health care professionals towards the prescription and delivery of oxygen therapy in the acute care setting. We hope that the results from this study will provide information that will be used to inform and facilitate the translation of evidence based guidelines into clinical practice.

As a clinician who delivers care to patients who use oxygen therapy, we understand that your views and opinions are important. You are invited to participate in this voluntary online survey. It is expected that this should take no longer than 15 minutes. There are no correct or incorrect responses, this survey is designed to explore your opinions regarding acute oxygen therapy.

This study has been granted ethics approval by Hunter New England Human Research Ethics Committee  (Approval number: 16/04/20/5.03) and the University of Newcastle Human Research Ethics Committee (Reference Number: H-2016-0222). For further information you can view the participant information HERE.

There are no anticipated risks to you for taking part in this survey. Information that you provide will be anonymous and remain confidential. Only those directly involved in this research have access to any answers that you provide. Participation in the survey implies consent and can be completed by clicking  the  OXYGEN SURVEY LINK HERE.

Please feel free to contact us directly if you have any questions regarding this research.

We thank you in advance for participating and ask you to consider forwarding this survey to other colleagues, who also deliver care to patients with oxygen therapy.

Kind Regards

Professor Vanessa McDonald
Professor Peter Wark
Joyce Cousins (PhD Scholar)









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