Though the Pulmonology Centre of Coimbra University
Medical School is based in the Department of Pulmonology and
Allergology of Coimbra University Hospital (HUC), it includes a multidisciplinary research unit, functioning in
collaboration with several Departments and Laboratories of the
University Hospital and Medical School, the Sciences and Technology
School, the School of Economics and Aveiro University. Also, the
Pathology Department, ENT Department, Infectious Diseases Department,
liability centre of the Cardiothoracic Department, Histocompatibility
Centre, Experimental Pathology Laboratory, Genetics Department of the
Faculty of Medicine, Institutes of Immunology and General Pathology,
IBILI, the Fluid Mechanics Department and the Chemistry Department of
the Sciences and Technology Faculty, Mathematics Department of the
The assignments undertaken by the Centre of
Pulmonology focus not only on deep lung behaviour when exposed to
various aggressions (environmental, occupational or infectious) but also
other areas such as pulmonary oncogenesis, models for assessing air
flow, respiratory allergology and interstitial lung diseases.
Pulmonary response to inhalatory aggressions, namely
those related to occupational environment, from a clinical and
experimental perspective, was, several years ago, the basis of the main
task of this Unit: the study of the Defensive structures, the
Reaction to injuries, and the consequences in Health and Disease
in the Respiratory System.
The scientific projects are mostly based on the
inpatient population (there are 66 ward beds within the Department) and
the outpatient clinic. However, there is also a close connection with
the community and the involvement of animal or virtual models, which are
developed within a multidisciplinary scope that includes imaging, lung
function, morphology and genetic studies.
Of the several projects being developed there are 5
strong areas of interest:
Studies on Lung Cancer, namely related with genes and
mutations for metabolizing enzymes and with drug resistance markers
through immunohistochemistry, in cooperation with the Pathology and
Genetics Departments of Coimbra Medical School.
The Immunology and Clinical ImmunoAllergology studies,
namely related with the Asthma European Network, intending to spread
excellence in the management of asthmatic patients, at this moment
focused on the elderly population, and with the dynamic evaluation of
allergic inflammation, in cooperation with the Institutes of Immunology
and General Pathology of Coimbra Medical School and with the IBILI
Studies in Interstitial Lung Diseases, specifically the
role of Th1/Th2 differentiation in different patterns of interstitial
disorders and the genetic expression of mediators of fibrotic evolution.
In addition, the mathematical analysis of clinical and laboratory data
on clinical decisions is carried out in cooperation with the
Histocompatibility Centre and the Genetics Department of Coimbra Medical
School and the Mathematics Department of the Economics Faculty
The European Network Tobacco-free health services made
Coimbra University Hospital the first and leading medical health service
free of tobacco in Portugal and there is a strong link with the
community in areas of education and prevention
The studies of genetic polymorphisms in Pulmonary Tuberculosis,
in cooperation with the Histocompatibility Center.
Since the foundation, the Centre has
approved directly 6 PhDs and 3 masters’ thesis. It has also
assisted in several other PhDs and master projects.
Currently, there are 5 PhDs and 2 masters’ students,
whose projects are being developed through the Unit.
Various of the researcher’s studies are published
annually in national and international journals and regularly awarded
prestigious scientific prizes, such as the “Thome-Villar prize 2006” and
the “SPAIC-UCB 2005 1st prize”, which are the main awards of
the Pulmonology Respiratory Society and the Allergology and Clinical
Immunology Portuguese Society.