COPD research published by UB team attracts notice of clinicians

NTHI

The NTHi strain of H. influenzae. Image shows biofilm formed on fixed human bronchial epithelial cells. 4,000 X magnification. Christian P. Ahearn and Peter Bush

Published September 13, 2018

A paper published by a team of UB researchers in the July edition of the Journal of Clinical Microbiology has been picked up by two publications targeted to health care professionals. 

“It’s rewarding to see one’s work receive clinical as well as scholarly attention.”
Sanjay Sethi, MD, chief of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine; CRO Director
Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
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“Lower Airway Bacterial Colonization Patterns and Species-specific Interactions in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)” focuses on patterns of interactions between four bacteria that may offer new opportunities for the treatment of COPD.

Pulmonology Advisor, which reports on issues in pulmonary and critical care medicine, and Chest Today, a publication of the American College of Chest Physicians, shared the paper with their readers in late August.

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David Jacobs, PharmD, PhD

“This study showed novel insights into interspecies interactions between common pathogenic bacteria in the lower respiratory tract of COPD patients,” said first author David Jacobs, PharmD, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice in the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and a Buffalo Translational Consortium Scholar supported by UB’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI). “Additional research is warranted to clarify the mechanisms of these complex interactions that shift bacterial species, which may have important implications for the treatment of COPD and offer novel therapeutic opportunities to alter the characteristics of the airway microbiota.”

The study looked at interactions between Haemophilus influenzae, Moraxella catarrhalis, Streptococcus pneumoniae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, which are common in the lower respiratory tract of COPD patients. Tracking of 181 patients found that S. pneumoniae colonization was positively associated with H. influenzae colonization, but negative associations existed between P. aeruginosa and H. influenzae and between P. aeruginosa and M. catarrhalis colonizations.

The other authors on the study were: Heather Ochs-Balcom, PhD, Department of Epidemiology and Environmental Health, and Jiwei Zhao, PhD, Department of Biostatistics, both from the School of Public Health and Health Professions; Timothy Murphy, MD, SUNY Distinguished Professor and director of the CTSI; and Sanjay Sethi, MD, chief of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and director of UB’s Clinical Research Office.

“It’s rewarding to see one’s work receive clinical as well as scholarly attention,” said Sethi. “It’s our hope that this line of research proves to be a fertile ground for future treatment strategies.”