Research

The Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Division offers ongoing clinical trial therapies for asthma, COPD, pulmonary fibrosis, pulmonary hypertension, sarcoidosis, and other conditions. Our team has a long history of involvement in NIH-funded multicenter trials as we aim to continually provide patients improved treatment options. Ongoing trials include:

  • Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial: Funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI), this study aimed to determine whether cancer screening tests help to reduce deaths from these four types of cancer. The PLCO trial opened in 1992 and patient enrollment of 155,000 men and women across the U.S. ended in 2001, screening tests were completed in 2006, and patient follow-up will continue through 2016 to determine cancer screening benefits.
  • Long-term Oxygen Treatment Trial (LOTT): This 6-year NIH study examined the effects of home oxygen therapy for patients with COPD and was completed in 2013; data analysis is ongoing.
  • Subpopulations and Intermediate Outcome Measures In COPD Study (SPIROMICS): This NIH trial aims to validate specific biological and clinical outcomes for patients with COPD.

Pulmonary research studies

Our Division has held a key role in many critical research studies:

Nocturnal Oxygen Therapy Trial (NOTT), Principal Investigators: Drs. Paul Kvale and William Conway
NOTT showed that long-term oxygen therapy improved survival in COPD patients with stable arterial PO2

Lung Health I, Principal Investigators: Drs. William Conway and Michael Eichenhorn
The first study aimed to determine the effects of special care compared to usual care on the rate of decline in pulmonary function in a group of cigarette smokers identified as having mild abnormalities in pulmonary function.

Lung Health II, Principal Investigator: Dr. Michael Eichenhorn
The second study aimed to determine if COPD participants assigned to inhaled corticosteroids had a lower rate of decline in lung function and lower incidence of respiratory morbidity compared to participants assigned to placebo.

Lung Health III (1998 onward), Principal Investigator: Dr. Michael Eichenhorn
Survivors of the Lung Health II were invited into Lung Health III to determine the long-term effects of smoking cessation versus continued smoking on cardiopulmonary morbidity, mortality, and the rate of decline in FEV1 in men and women with early chronic obstructive lung disease who have been followed prospectively for 12 to 15 years.

Prospective Investigation of Pulmonary Embolism Diagnosis (PIOPED), Principal Investigators: Drs. John Popovich, Jr., and Kenneth Leeper.
This multicenter study provided comprehensive criteria for ventilation-perfusion (V/Q) lung scan use in the diagnostic evaluation of patients with suspected PE.

PIOPED II, Principal Investigators: Drs. John Popovich, Jr., and John Buckley.
The second study aimed to determine if spiral CT is the best test for suspected PE.

National Lung Screening Trial (NLST): This NCI study compared two ways of detecting lung cancer, by spiral computed tomography (CT) or standard chest x-ray. The trial enrolled 53,000 patients by 2004 and completed participant surveys in 2010.
Understanding Potential Long-term Impacts on Function with Tiotropium (UPLIFT): This pharmaceutical-funded study examined the role of tiotropium, an anti-cholinergic medication, on morbidity and mortality of patients with COPD.