Respiratory Diseases PhD/MPhil/MD

Major code: RPPR (PhD), RPMR (MPhil), RPMD (MD)


The subject of Respiratory Diseases covers all aspects of diseases of the respiratory tract, including acute and chronic disorders.  In IGH our main focus is on respiratory diseases caused by infectious agents including bacteria, viruses, fungi or parasites affecting both humans and animals of economic importance.

Subject Overview

Research in Respiratory Diseases is based in new laboratories at three sites: the Ronald Ross Building, IC2 and Leahurst. It encompasses studies of bacterial pathogenesis, bacterial behaviour during infections, host-pathogen interactions, animal models of respiratory infection, markers of severe lung injury. The work covers a range of bacterial pathogens including: Streptococcus pneumoniae, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Neisseria meningitidis.  We also study Pseudomonas aeruginosa and other pathogens important in Cystic Fibrosis.  There is also research into immune responses to influenza virus, with particular reference to vaccine design in relation to protection against pandemic influenza.

Techniques used include: tissue and pathogen culture, animal models, lymphocyte culture, flow cytometry, ELISA, proliferation assays, PCR and transcriptomic and genomic technologies, including metagenomics, resequencing and genotyping.

The aims of the research are to host-pathogen interactions focusing on respiratory pathogens of human or veterinary importance and to use this knowledge to design better therapeutic strategies, diagnostics or vaccines to benefit clinical and veterinary medicine.

Why choose Infection and Global Health?

Our postgraduate students have access to unrivalled expertise among Institute staff in a variety of infectious and non-infectious diseases of humans and animals, together with state-of-the-art facilities. The Institute integrates medical and veterinary research to enhance exchange of knowledge and skills, putting us at the forefront of the ‘one health agenda’.  We offer an outstanding teaching and learning experience undertaken within a culture of research excellence, which keeps staff at the cutting edge of knowledge and ensures student talent is nurtured and celebrated.