The Thoracic Society of ANZ


Home 5 Research Roundup 5 VOLUME 5.07 – DECEMBER 2020

Research Roundup:

December 2020

Welcome Message

Welcome to this month’s edition of our TSANZ Research Roundup.

This is a busy time for TSANZ and LFA’s research awards, with the Ann Woolcock New Investigator Award and LFA Ludwig Engel Research Award, Lizotte Family Research Award and Ivan Cash Research Awards currently under review. Keep your eyes open for several TSANZ awards opening soon! These will be accessible on the TSANZ Awards Submission Portal and include the new CFA Innovation Grant as detailed below. Also note NHMRC’s Special Initiative in Human Health and Environmental Change (SIHHEC). This will provide a catalytic stimulus to improve Australia’s current capability and capacity in human health and environmental change research, by supporting a single, multidisciplinary, nationally focused, collaborative network of researchers across Australia. The work of this network will help to protect the health of the Australian community and build a resilient and responsive health system. The focus includes improving current understanding of the complex interactions between primary, secondary and tertiary health effects of environmental and climate change.

Plans for our virtual ASM in 2021 are well underway, with registrations now open. Please visit our TSANZSRS2021 website for more details.

Finally, please consider helping us to provide essential funding for our world class respiratory researchers and for our TSANZ awards. You can leave a tax deductible donation of your choice in our areas of need, whether it be a donation to our Benevolent Fund or to support research, establishing a named award or leaving TSANZ a gift in your will. Details can be found below.

Please feel free to get in touch with the office if there is anything we can do to support your research needs during this time.

Enjoy the December edition of your Research Roundup.

Prof Sandra Hodge

Chair, Research Sub-Committee

Open Awards

Thoracic Society Awards

TSANZ Janet Elder International Travel Award – closing 15 January 2021

Boehringer Ingelheim New Zealand COPD Travel Award – closing 15 January 2021

TSANZ Peter Phelan Research Grant – closing 27 January 2021

TSANZ Rob Pierce Grant-in-Aid for Indigenous Lung Health – closing 27 January 2021

Maurice Blackburn Occupational Lung Disease Grant-in-Aid – closing 27 January 2021

Lung Foundations Awards

Cochrane Airways Australia Scholarship – closing 4 December 2020

Cystic Fibrosis Australia Awards

Australian Cystic Fibrosis Research Trust 2021 Innovation Grant – closing 29 January 2021

How to participate

Follow the links above to access each award application form and download the information sheet.

Please email the TSANZ Awards Coordinator with any questions, comments or enquires.

Cystic Fibrosis Innovation Grant

Cystic Fibrosis Australia (CFA) is pleased to announce the 2021 Innovation Grant for post- doctoral researchers, currently working in cystic fibrosis (CF) research. This grant is awarded annually to one applicant for one year.

The Innovation Grant will allow a CF researcher to explore novel concepts at the initial feasibility stage.  Innovative applications relating to any aspect in the field of CF are encouraged, even those lacking pilot data.  The grant aims to allow the researcher to generate sufficient data within the one-year grant period to be in a position to apply for additional support from an appropriate funding body to continue the research.

The Innovation grant will be offered to post-doctoral researchers currently working in or proposing to work in CF research.  The researcher will have completed a research higher degree in CF or a related area within the last ten years.

The recipient of the Innovation Grant is required to provide progress reports on their research to CFA every six months.  In addition, and where appropriate, the recipient will be asked to make a presentation at a CFA conference (held every two years) in Australia.

The maximum amount awarded under the Innovation Grant will be $80,000.  The actual amount provided will be subject to approval of the applicant’s budget.

Applications can be made through the website of The Thoracic Society of Australia & New Zealand (TSANZ) and must be received by TSANZ no later than 5.00 pm (AEDT) 29th January 2021.

Registrations open for ASM

Registrations are now open for our first ever Virtual Annual Scientific Meeting! Be a part of TSANZSRS21 on 1-2 May 2021 from the comfort of your own home.

Respirology – Editor’s Choice

Respirology Issue 25.11 November 2020


Predictive value of control of COPD for risk of exacerbations: An international, prospective study

Marc Miravitlles, Pawel Sliwinski, Chin Kook Rhee, Richard W. Costello, Victoria Carter, Jessica H.Y. Tan, Therese S. Lapperre, Bernardino Alcazar, Caroline Gouder, Cristina Esquinas, Juan Luis García-Rivero, Anu Kemppinen, Augustine Tee, Miguel Roman-Rodrígues, Juan José Solder-Cataluña, David B. Price and on behlaf of the Respiratory Effectiveness Group (REG)


Cover caption: Control in COPD is a tool to assess clinical patient status and decision making on step-up or down treatment. Uncontrolled status is associated with an increased risk of exacerbations. This is a collaborative international study of REG, a not-for-profit initiative established by international experts in real-life and comparative effectiveness research in respiratory medicine

DOI: 10.1111/resp.13811


Disease progression across the spectrum of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: A multicentre study

Giacomo Sgalla, Erminia Lo Greco, Mariarosaria Calvello, Francesco Varone, Bruno Iovene, Stefania Cerri, Pierluigi Donatelli, Ada Vancheri, Mauro Pavone, Fabrizio Luppi, Carlo Vancheri and Luca Richeldi


Cover caption: The collaborative research team from three Italian centres in Catania, Rome and Modena. From left to right: Ada Vancheri, Carlo Vancheri, Bruno Iovene, Mauro Pavone, Giacomo Sgalla, Stefania Cerri, Francesco Varone, Luca Richeldi.

DOI: 10.1111/resp.13805


Respirology Issue 25.12 December 2020



Bronchial thermoplasty versus mepolizumab: Comparison of outcomes in a severe asthma clinic

David Langton, Joy Shia, Suzy Guo, Julie Sharp, Ceri Banks, Wei Wang, Virginia Plumber and Francis Thien


Cover caption:

Bronchial thermoplasty: Work in progress

DOI: 10.1111/resp.13830


Cost of hospitalisation for bronchiectasis exacerbation in children

Vikas Goyal, Steven M McPhail, Frank Hurley, Keith Grimwood, Julie M Marchant, I Brent Masters and Anne B Chang


Cover caption:

The emblem of AusBREATHE (Australian Bronchiectasis Centre of Research Excellence, especially for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children) is a reproduction of a painting by First Nations artist and former Menzies employee, who describes how the painting represents the lungs as follows:

‘When the earth was made, so were the first trees. They cleaned the air through their branches and leaves. The same is reflected in us with our lungs; they have branches like trees breathing in the air and cleaning our body and provide much needed oxygen.The butterflies represent a delicate balance; if something happens to the air, the butterflies will die. That’s why we must look after our air, like we have to look after our lungs because they keep us alive. The red dots represent alveoli that are at the end of the branches.’

DOI: 10.1111/resp.13828

Research Review

NZ Respiratory Research Review Issue 177


NZ Respiratory Research Review Issue 178

NZ Respiratory Research Review Issue 179

As part of an ongoing series focussing on new registrations in Australia, Research Review has released a product review of the use of beclometasone dipropionate/formoterol (Fostair) for patients with asthma.

This review discusses the evidence in support of the use of Fostair, its pharmacological properties, dosage and administration, and efficacy and tolerability as demonstrated in pivotal clinical trials. It also provides commentary and recommendations from Professor Francis Thien, Director of the Department of Respiratory and Sleep Medicine at Box Hill Hospital, Eastern Health, and the Monash University Clinical School in Melbourne, Australia.


ASCOT trial

ASCOT is a clinical trial that will generate clinical evidence about treatment for COVID-19 that can be applied during the pandemic to reduce mortality or the need for mechanical ventilation in hospitalised but not yet critically ill patients with COVID-19.

The trial is conducted on an adaptive platform, results will be continually analysed, so that ineffective therapies can be stopped and new therapies can be evaluated as part of the trial. The trial will be conducted across more than 60 sites in Australia, New Zealand and Asia. The trial is registered at: ACTRN12620000445976, Ethics approval granted through Melbourne Health Human Research Ethics Committee HREC/62646/MH-2020.097

Potential Treatments for COVID-19

There are currently no specific therapies for COVID-19. The two main strategies are to limit the virus replicating (antiviral therapies) or to modulate the immune response (in some severe cases, there is a damaging over exuberant immune response).

ASCOT intends to randomise patients to different therapies to understand their impact on clinical outcomes. We will do this for existing therapies, but also be set-up to test new and emerging therapies as they become available.

ASCOT Trial Intervention

Initially, an open label trial of two existing treatments in a 2×2 factorial design with usual care arm will be conducted.

  1. Lopinavir/ritonavir (kaletra), a combination medicine that is used to treat human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) infection
  1. Hydroxychloroquine, a medicine used to treat rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory conditions and to prevent and treat malaria.

Protocol documents and further details are available at


Can you help TSANZ make a difference?

Your support makes a difference, and helps us continue to provide funding for research and our TSANZ awards. If you would like to support our work, you can leave a tax deductible donation of your choice in our areas of need.

1. Making a donation to our Benevolent Fund

The Benevolent Fund supports projects aimed at improving the respiratory health care of individuals who are in a setting where health care resources and delivery are poor.
CLICK HERE to make a donation or by filling out the Support TSANZ form. Once you have completed the form, please email

2. Making a donation to support research

With your support, we can continue to support Australia and New Zealand’s most significant and cutting edge respiratory health research, and benefit Australians and New Zealanders suffering from lung disease.
Please CLICK HERE to make a donation or by filling out the Support TSANZ form. Once you have completed the form, please email

3. Establishing a named award

For significant donations of above $10,000 AUD, a TSANZ award can be established in your name. Please call the TSANZ office on +61 2 9222 6200.

4. Leave TSANZ a gift in your will

If you are interested in supporting TSANZ in the future, one way to do so is to leave TSANZ a gift in your will. Any support is greatly appreciated and will leave a lasting legacy.
If interested, please notify us by ticking the box on the Support TSANZ form. Once you have completed the form, please email Alternatively, please call the TSANZ Office on +61 2 9222 6200.

5. TSANZ New Zealand Branch Incorporated 

New Zealand members are reminded that you are also able to make a tax deductible donation directly to the NZ branch. You can assist the NZ branch to provide services to members across NZ. If you make a payment via electronic funds transfer (EFT), please notify the TSANZ office so that we can arrange a receipt.
CLICK HERE to make a donation.

Thank you for your continued support of TSANZ.



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