COPD Research

Research improves the quality of everyday life for those diagnosed with COPD.

Why We Need Research

COPD research helps us understand how the disease is caused, how it develops and how it is best treated. Research can provide a better and longer future for those diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Our COPD Research Program

The American Lung Association is committed to funding COPD research. Our Awards and Grants Program seeks out top-notch researchers at important career crossroads to gain long-term commitment to lung health and disease research. Without the life-long dedication of lung researchers, important and much needed discoveries would be impossible. In addition, the Lung Association funds the Airways Clinical Research Centers Network, which implements patient-centered clinical trials and has helped changed nature of asthma and COPD patient care across the United States.

What Research Is Being Done?

Some of the current topics American Lung Association funded researchers are investigating include ways to reduce mucus production in COPD, how genes influence the development of cigarette smoke-induced COPD and how to increase adherence to supplemental oxygen therapy in people with COPD.

Thanks to the medical breakthroughs led by Lung Association researchers and their colleagues, our researchers have made significant contributions to the field of COPD. 

Currently funded Lung Association researchers are investigating:  

  • The potential positive impact of Losartan on specific subgroups of emphysema patients.
  • The role of iron metabolism ion the pathogenesis of COPD; the potential for correcting iron dysfunction and curtailing COPD development.
  • The risk of CVD following an acute exacerbation of COPD and the potential of using aspirin to reduce the risk of both CVD and acute exacerbation of COPD.
  • Does blood vessel damage contribute to the development of COPD and can this investigation help find new treatment for the disease.

COPD Researchers

Visit our Meet the Researchers section to view our COPD researchers and their studies.

COPD Clinical Trials

Airways Clinical Research Centers

The American Lung Association Airways Clinical Research Centers (ACRC) Network is the nation's largest not-for-profit network of clinical research centers dedicated to asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) treatment research, attracting some of the best investigators nationwide. The ACRC Network conducts large clinical trials that will directly impact patient care for COPD and asthma.  

Meet our Principal Investigators, see where our centers are located and learn more about some of the important research findings at

Reviewed and approved by the American Lung Association Scientific and Medical Editorial Review Panel.

Page last updated: March 27, 2023

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