A Pulmonary Podcast Series by the American Lung Association and HCPLive

Welcome to Lungcast

The American Lung Association has partnered with HCPLive, a clinical news and information portal for physicians, to launch our podcast series hosted by our very own Chief Medical Officer Dr. Albert Rizzo. Entitled Lungcast™, it spotlights conversations with researchers, physicians, patients and advocates about hot topics impacting lung health.

Hear a preview of what's to come on this podcast, a deep-dive interview series on the greatest topics of respiratory health.

Latest Episodes

Dr. Stephanie Lovinsky-Desir

Episode #44: Multidisciplinary Asthma Care in High-Risk Communities with Dr. Stephanie Lovinsky-Desir

In honor of World Asthma Day, Dr. Stephanie Lovinsky-Desir of Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York visits our virtual studio to talk about all things asthma. Dr. Lovinsky-Desir, who has a deep understanding of how environmental factors impact children with asthma, touches upon inequities in asthma care, the role of climate change and COVID-19 lessons learned. She also hones in on whether biologic therapies may help interrupt pathways in the atopic march.

Dr. John Balmes, MD

Episode #43: 2024 State of the Air: Adverse Health Effects of Exposures to Particle and Ozone Pollution, Plus More with Dr. John Balmes

Dr. John Balmes, a renowned environmental health sciences expert from the University of California, San Francisco, joins us for a deep dive into the Lung Association’s newly released 2024 “State of the Air” report. He specifically provides context behind several concerning trends, notably a spike in deadly particle pollution—the highest levels in the past 25 years largely due to wildfires. The eye-opening conversation also impresses upon the importance of clean transportation and power generation to help mitigate population-wide risk. This is a must-listen!

Dr. Maryam Valapour
Dr. Kenneth McCurry

Episode #42: A Look at the Lung Allocation System: Improving Patient Access with Drs. Kenneth McCurry & Maryam Valapour

Cleveland Clinic’s Dr. Maryam Valapour rejoins our broadcast, along with her colleague Dr. Kenneth McCurry, to discuss optimization of the lung allocation system to continue reducing waitlist times and patient mortality. It includes commentary on how recent changes to scoring protocols are expected to impact ongoing disparities related to race and socioeconomic status. They additionally talk about the role of transplantation in patients who have severely damaged lungs resulting from COVID-19 infection, an update since our 2021 conversation.

Episode #41: The Promise of Lung Cancer Precision Medicine with Dr. Jonathan Spicer

Precision medicine–delivering the right drug at the right time to the right patient–is the direction in which lung cancer treatment is heading. In this episode, we talk about an exciting, emerging drug class with one of the most prominent investigators involved with its development, Dr. Jonathan Spicer at McGill University’s Thoracic Oncology Network. It provides a deep dive into neoadjuvant therapy for patients who have operable lung cancer, offering insight into what is currently known about response and failure rates.

Special Report: Reflecting on the 1964 Surgeon General Report with Viet Le

In recognition of 60 years since the historic contribution to modern understanding of the harmful effects of cigarette smoking, host Dr. Albert Rizzo meets with preventive cardiology expert Viet Le, DMSc, PA-C to discuss the myriad of cascading impacts delivered by this landmark report.

Episode #40: The Health Crisis of Physician Burnout with Dr. Sue Padernacht

We are beginning 2024 with a matter that extends beyond the confines of pulmonary medicine and really has become something of a crisis in the U.S. healthcare system over the last decades. Organizational psychology expert Dr. Sue Padernacht joins Lungcast to provide an in-depth look into physician burnout—what are its drivers, what factors are exacerbating it, and how the collective medical community can work toward curbing its effect among caregivers.

Dr. Albert Rizzo headshot

2023 Recap: This Year in Medicine

To reflect on 2023’s spectacular headlines in the lung health field, we present to you a special recap episode spotlighting our favorite interview segments of the past year.

Mark Hernandez in a lab, wearing a blue lab coat and gloves

Episode #39: Why Good Indoor Air Quality Matters with Dr. Mark Hernandez

For this episode fully focused on indoor air pollution, we are joined by Dr. Mark Hernandez who serves as director of the Aerobiology and Disinfection Lab at the University of Colorado. Listen in to learn about the harmful impact of pollutants such as mold, toxic chemicals and asbestos on respiratory health, particularly in a school setting. Equally important, what can be done to help alleviate these effects?

Christy F is shown from the shoulders up. She has blonde curly hair and is wearing a floral red top.

Episode #38: Lung Cancer Patient Perspective with Christy Fischer

Christy Fischer, a miraculous 17-year stage IV lung cancer survivor, connects with us to discuss stress, stigma and significant changes in the treatment landscape. Hear how Christy transformed a daunting diagnosis into hope for others. This educational and inspirational episode touches upon the raw emotions of what it is like to live (and thrive!) with advanced cancer.

Dr. Barbara Taylor is shown from the shoulders up. She has short, brown hair and light skin. She is wearing a grey jacket over a hot pink shirt.

Episode #37: RSV Wrap-up: Transmission, Testing & Timing of Vaccinations with Dr. Barbara Taylor

With cases of Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) on the rise this fall, Dr. Barbara Taylor, professor of infectious diseases at UT Health San Antonio, joins us for this timely episode all about RSV. Importantly, she covers the unprecedented events of the 2022-2023 season that was marred by a ‘tripledemic’ of respiratory diseases. How do the lessons learned change the preventive approach to better protect against the deadly infection?  

Dr Parth Rali is shown from the chest up. He is wearing a dark blue suit and light blue dress shirt with a striped tie. He has light brown skin and dark hair. He has a beard and mustache.

Episode #36: Medical Truth-isms of Pulmonary Embolisms with Dr. Parth Rali

Pulmonary vascular disease expert Dr. Parth Rali at Temple Lung Center helps break down what is known about massive and submassive pulmonary emboli (PE), namely blood clots. This episode provides a comprehensive overview of PE, from the complications of diagnosis to the evolution of therapeutic modalities.

Dr. Julia Moore Vogel. She has curly dark brown hair, light skin, and is wearing a gray short sleeved top. We can only see her from the shoulder up.

Episode #35: Leading the Long Game for Long COVID Research with Dr. Julia Moore Vogel

In this must-listen episode, Dr. Julia Moore Vogel at Scripps Research takes center stage to confer the still-emerging and always-evolving space of long COVID. As patient numbers continue to rise at an alarming rate, she makes a strong case about the critical need to better define the disease, mitigate its impact and, ultimately, break the taboo.

Carolyn Presley

Episode #34: A Rapidly Changing Landscape: Lung Cancer Detection & Treatment with Dr. Carolyn Presley

For this episode focusing on the role of medical oncology, we are joined by Dr. Carolyn Presley, thoracic oncologist and associate professor with tenure at Ohio State University. As a geriatric expert, she provides a poignant point-of-view on the need for a multidisciplinary approach to patient care, as well as advances in treatment that include targeted therapies.

Dr. Albert Rizzo headshot

Episode #33: Poor Air Quality Across the U.S.: What You Need to Know

Amid mass poor air quality exposure due to ongoing Canadian wildfires, the Lung Association’s Chief Medical Officer and Lungcast™ host Dr. Albert Rizzo explains the air quality index, signs and symptoms of acute and long-term poor air exposure, high-risk patient populations, and the concerning future of particle pollution exposure.

Anne Dixon

Episode #32: Live from ATS 2023 with Dr. Anne Dixon

Dr. Anne Dixon at University of Vermont, the first repeat guest in the history of Lungcast™, rejoins our Chief Medical Officer Dr. Albert Rizzo on the floor at the American Thoracic Society (ATS) 2023 International Conference in Washington, D.C., to discuss headline news from the annual meeting and her ongoing work in clinical airway research.

Dr. Priyal Gupta

Episode #31: Where Allergy and Asthma Intersect with Dr. Payel Gupta

Just in time for May’s Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month, allergist and immunologist Dr. Payel Gupta of headlines a conversation about the clinical presentation of asthma and its role in the atopic march. She also details various phenotypes, endotypes and other molecular mechanisms of asthma that can be applied to help guide disease management and treatment decisions.

Dr. Ravi Kalhan

Episode #30: The Future of Lung Disease Interception with Dr. Ravi Kalhan

For our 30th episode of Lungcast™, we are joined by pulmonologist Dr. Ravi Kalhan of Northwestern Medicine for a core-level discussion on the modeling of respiratory health and pulmonary mechanisms. In addition to sharing how a novel machine learning method may one day soon predict lung disease susceptibility, Dr. Kalhan describes the science behind the American Lung Association Lung Health Cohort Research Study.

Dr. David Tom Cooke

Episode #29: Thoracic Surgeons on the Lung Cancer Team with Dr. David Tom Cooke

Dr. David Tom Cooke, founding chief of the Division of General Thoracic Surgery at UC Davis, joins the first episode of 2023 to discuss his colleague’s specific role in lung cancer screening and intervention, advances to minimally invasive, robotic and bronchoscopic techniques, and evolving strategies in individualized patient care.

Bob Levey
Jennifer Folkenroth

Episode #28: Smoking Cessation Wisdom with Bob Levey & Jennifer Folkenroth

Will your New Year’s resolution kick off the journey to quit smoking? In our final Lungcast™ interview of 2022, Bob Levey, former Washington Post columnist and founder of the Super Stoppers Club, and the Lung Association’s national senior director of tobacco programs, Jennifer Folkenroth, come together to discuss the challenges and the resources available to help you quit smoking. The lively and informative discussion outlines the path to a smoke-free life, which is often riddled with hurdles and stressors.

Dr Edward Brooks
Dr Charlene McEvoy

Episode #27: The Air We Breathe: Risks of Poor Indoor Air Quality with Drs. Edward Brooks & Charlene McEvoy

Among many unintended and unexpected effects of sheltering in place during the COVID-19 pandemic is the substantial increase in exposures to indoor allergens and pollutants. Here, Dr. Edward Brooks at University of Texas at San Antonio and Dr. Charlene McEvoy at HealthPartners in Minnesota bring a shared expertise on air quality health and research to discuss the resulting health ramifications. It is an enlightening conversation about the patient populations who are most impacted, plus what can be done to help mitigate the consequences.

Elizabeth Estes headshot, she has short blonde hair and is smiling into the camera. She is wearing a purple collared shirt.
Dr. Simon Walsh headshot, he has dark hair and a short grey beard. He is wearing a blue jacket with a white collared shirt and red tie.

Episode #26: Crowdsourcing Data to Improve Interstitial Lung Disease Outcomes with Elizabeth Estes & Dr. Simon Walsh

Could a repository of anonymized CT scans and clinical information provide critical clues about rare, unclassified lung diseases? Elizabeth Estes, executive director of Open Source Imaging Consortium, and Dr. Simon Walsh, consultant radiologist and NIHR clinician scientist, sure think so. In this episode, Elizabeth and Dr. Walsh join us to discuss the exciting role machine learning and algorithms may play on enhancing our disease knowledge—from diagnosis and prognosis to biomarker discovery and therapy response.

Dr. Reena Mehra looks into the camera, smiling. She has long dark hair and is wearing a red shirt.

Episode #25: Deconstructing Obstructive Sleep Apnea with Dr. Reena Mehra

Modern obstructive sleep apnea presents an under met challenge in pulmonary health. This episode, featuring Dr. Reena Mehra at Cleveland Clinic, delves into the ins and outs of this surprisingly common disease that is practically defined by its hefty symptom burden. Listen in to learn more about sleep apnea’s improved diagnostics and advancing therapies, as well as the role of comorbid conditions.

Dr. Carla Lamb from the shoulder up. She has shoulder length blonde hair and is wearing a black sweater over a blue shirt.

Episode #24: Innovations in Interventional Pulmonology with Dr. Carla Lamb

Dr. Carla Lamb at Lahey Hospital & Medical Center joins us to discuss her role in developing early interventional pulmonary training and recommendations, the utility of key diagnostic tools in the subspecialty, evolving roles for lung cancer treatments including bronchial stents, modernized COPD intervention and research, and the future of interventional pulmonary medicine. It is an information-packed interview!

Doctor Juan Carlos Cardet looks into the camera. He has on a blue checked shirt and white lab coat. He has dark hair and a dark beard.
Doctor Elliot Israel turns toward the camera wearing a navy blue suit jacket, light blue dress shirt and navy tie with green and yellow diagonal stripes.

Episode #23: Modern Asthma Care & SMART Strategy with Drs. Juan Carlos Cardet & Elliot Israel

In recognition of May’s Asthma Awareness Month, this episode highlights our conversation with Dr. Juan Carlos Cardet at University of South Florida and Dr. Elliot Israel at Brigham and Women’s Hospital about the most common respiratory disease in the U.S. It provides a deep dive into the guideline-supported SMART strategy, role of COVID-19 in current asthma risks, and research into the medical and financial impacts of asthma on the U.S. patient population.

More about Drs. Cardet and Israel’s latest research can be found on our Research News webpage.

Doctor Mehdi Mirsaeidi looks into the camera with a small smile. He is wearing a white lab coat over a white shirt with a dark blue striped bowtie.

Episode #22: Sarcoidosis Treatment Landscape & Diagnostic Hurdles with Dr. Mehdi Mirsaeidi

For Sarcoidosis Awareness Month, we are joined by Dr. Mehdi Mirsaeidi, director of the ILD and Sarcoidosis Program at Jacksonville College of Medicine, to review the challenges and research surrounding the rare inflammatory disease. This episode provides an enlightening overview of the history of the underrated disease and its unique inflammatory process, as well as treatment protocols and breakthroughs beyond steroids. Be sure to tune in to also learn more about the role of lung transplantation and COVID-19 complications.

doctor eric kmiec stands in front of greenery in a black blazer and grey buttoned shirt with glasses on
doctor natalia rivera torrest wearing a grey long-sleeved shirt smiling with pink hair

Episode #21: Gene Editing: Making the Impossible Possible with Drs. Eric Kmiec & Natalia Rivera-Torres

For decades, scientists have hypothesized about a future when diseases could be treated with gene editing techniques. The reality is getting closer to fruition! In this fascinating episode, Drs. Eric Kmiec and Natalia Rivera-Torres at ChristianaCare’s Gene Editing Institute share the latest developments in DNA alteration and explain why CRISPR gene editing continues to offer the most promise. They also detail how their lab’s pioneering work in squamous cell carcinoma is leading to what will be the first-ever lung cancer patient trial using CRISPR gene editing in a solid tumor.

dr leroy graham

Episode #20: Fighting Disparities in Pediatric Asthma Care with Dr. LeRoy Graham

Continuing Black History Month, esteemed pediatric pulmonologist Dr. LeRoy Graham of Bridge Atlanta Medical Center drops by to discuss the disparities that continue to exist in childhood asthma. With a 40-plus year history helping underserved communities, this easy-to-digest episode hits many high points about improving access to asthma care.

dr ify osunkwo

Episode #19: The Troubling Cycle of Sickle Cell Disease with Dr. Ify Osunkwo

In recognition of Black History Month, we are joined by internationally acclaimed sickle cell disease expert Dr. Ify Osunkwo at Atrium Health to address stigma, mistrust and disparities. Born in Nigeria, she shares her unique perspectives on the genesis of this genetic disorder and its inequitable public health impacts. Check out the episode for an interesting overview of a storied disease.

Dr Gerard Criner headshot

Episode #18: Current State of COPD with Dr. Gerard Criner

For the first episode of 2022, we welcome Dr. Gerard Criner at Temple University to summarize key highlights of recent clinical trials and research studies in the COPD field. Additionally, he outlines his work on the development of non-surgical techniques for patients who have advanced COPD. What have been the greatest impacts? Hurdles? Listen and learn.

Special Episode: The Best of Our 2021 Interviews

Join the Lung Association’s Dr. Albert Rizzo for an end-of-year recap of the best highlights from Lungcast in 2021, featuring perspectives on COVID-19, asthma, lung cancer, tuberculosis, flu and more.


Episode #17: Fend Off Flu with Dr. Shantanu Agrawal

With flu season upon us, Dr. Shantanu Agrawal, Chief Health Officer of Anthem Inc., joins us on behalf of their philanthropic arm, Anthem Foundation, to converse about the importance of flu vaccines as a key social driver of health. This episode explores the various vaccination modalities and related public health guidelines, as well as how our joint Fund Off Flu campaign aims to increase influenza knowledge and vaccination rates.

Dr. James Mulshine

Episode #16: Lung Cancer Screening: Trials, Tribulations & Triumphs with Dr. James Mulshine

In recognition of Lung Cancer Awareness Month, this episode featuring Dr. James Mulshine at Rush University explains the ins and outs of the improved 2021 lung cancer screening guidelines. While a big step in the right direction, complexities and challenges of equitable access to low-dose CT scans continue to persist, plus the profound impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on screening rates.

Marilyn Glassberg MD

Episode #15: Interstitial Lung Disease: Scratching Beneath the Surface with Dr. Marilyn Glassberg

Interstitial lung disease, which prominently includes idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, is a very broad category of chronic lung conditions with considerable nuance. To help break it down within the context of diagnosis and treatment, Dr. Marilyn Glassberg at University of Arizona joins us to discuss the roles of biomarkers, biopsies and drugs. This episode also sheds light on multidisciplinary clinics and stem cell therapy.

Dr. Michael Greenberg
Dr. Richard Nettles

Episode #14: Vaccination Roundtable with Drs. Michael Greenberg & Richard Nettles

In this timely episode, we are joined by infectious disease experts Dr. Michael Greenberg of Sanofi Pasteur and Dr. Richard (Rick) Nettles of Johnson & Johnson to discuss respiratory virus immunization. It touches upon many hot topics, including the inadvertent health consequences of the pandemic. Additionally, they offer fascinating insight into how unprecedented collaboration and transparency have raised the research bar.

mario castro

Episode #13: Biologic Breakthroughs for Severe Asthma with Dr. Mario Castro

In preparation for Peak Week, we welcome Dr. Mario Castro from University of Kansas School of Medicine to guide us through the myriad of emerging asthma biologic agents. While this novel drug class has heralded an era of targeted therapy, what are the promises and challenges? Dr. Castro discusses the inflammatory cascade that drives the disease process, along with the evolution of biomarkers used to predict treatment response.


Episode #12: Future of Lung Cancer Precision Medicine with Dr. Andrea Mazzocchi

Data beget progress. Such is the promise and hope of artificial intelligence, particularly machine learning, to match lung cancer patients with their optimal treatments. In this episode, Dr. Andrea Mazzocchi, Co-founder and CEO of Known Medicine, dissects the art and the science of how profiling biomarkers, epigenetics and the microenvironment may provide the synergy needed to revolutionize the oncologic landscape.


Episode #11: What We Know about Health Effects of E-Cigarettes with Dr. Kevin Walton

Dr. Kevin Walton, Branch Chief of NIH’s National Institute on Drug Abuse, joins us to deliberate on one of the most-discussed topics in respiratory health today: electronic cigarettes. Ever since their 2007 introduction in the U.S., these popular nicotine delivery systems have sounded the alarm of public health experts everywhere. In this episode, Dr. Walton breaks down the science surrounding their use, including addictive properties and device emissions, while explaining the data gaps that remain to be filled. His team is leading the charge to better understand the health risks and helping to develop a standardized device for research purposes.


Episode #10: Air Quality, Climate Change & Health Impacts with Drs. Alan Greenglass & Pouné Saberi

Drs. Alan Greenglass and Pouné Saberi at ChristianaCare share their expertise in population medicine and social responsibility to make a case for climate justice. What is the human cost of poor health due to climate change? How can medical institutions improve their carbon footprints? All healthcare providers are encouraged to tune in to learn effective strategies and actionable tactics for transforming public policies and moving the environmental needle. (Additional resources can be located at and

Cleveland Clinic

Episode #9: Advancements in Lung Transplants with Cleveland Clinic Team

Cleveland Clinic’s Drs. Carli Lehr, Wayne Tsuang and Maryam Valapour are in the studio to discuss the art and science of lung transplantation. So much progress has been made in recent years, such as successfully bridging patients to transplant, expanding the lung donor pool and preventing post-transplant complications. This impressive team shares their unique, in-the-field perspectives that include why short-term survival rates have greatly improved, while long-term gains have been more modest.


Episode #8: Storied History & Continued Hurdles of Tuberculosis with Dr. Philip LoBue

Just in time for World Tuberculosis Day, we are joined by Dr. Philip LoBue, CDC’s Director of the Division of Tuberculosis Elimination. The informative discussion reviews how TB once devastated the U.S., contributed to the Lung Association’s humble beginnings, and remains a worldwide burden. Tune in to learn all about this epidemic-level infectious disease – from transmission to treatment.

dr. alcendor

Episode #7: The Discriminate Effect of COVID-19 with Dr. Donald Alcendor

This episode kicks off Black History Month by featuring nationally recognized infectious disease expert Dr. Donald Alcendor of Meharry Medical College. Dr. Alcendor virtually sits down with host Dr. Albert Rizzo to detail how historic and ongoing health disparities in Black, Brown and other communities of color impact the COVID-19 pandemic. It also sheds new light on coronavirus mutations and monoclonal antibodies, in addition to the importance of an equitable vaccination rollout.


Episode #6: New Asthma Management Guidelines Primer with Dr. Anne Dixon

Dr. Rizzo kicks off 2021 with a crash course on NHLBI’s newly released Asthma Management Guidelines with Dr. Anne Dixon at the University of Vermont. Dr. Dixon is a member of the Expert Panel Working Group that originated the focused updates. With six priority topic areas, they are designed to improve patient care and support informed decision making in the clinical setting.

meilan han

Episode #5: COPD Check-in with Dr. MeiLan Han

The last episode of 2020! On it, Dr. Rizzo catches up with leading expert Dr. MeiLan Han at the University of Michigan to share insights into the most burdensome chronic respiratory disease in the U.S. – chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The conversation not only covers phenotypes and prognosis, but recent studies and new treatments.

Avrum Spira, M.D.
Steven Dubinett, M.D.

Episode #4: Dreaming of Lung Cancer Interception with Drs. Avrum Spira and Steven Dubinett

It is a twofer in this episode capturing the spirit of Lung Cancer Awareness Month when Dr. Rizzo is joined by leaders of the Lung Cancer Interception Dream Team, Dr. Avrum Spira at Boston University and Dr. Steven Dubinett at University of California, Los Angeles. The Dream Team – our joint effort with Stand Up To Cancer and LUNGevity – is an alliance of over 40 experts focused on discovering better ways to detect lung cancer before it takes hold.

Dr. Fauci

Episode #3: Up Close & Personal with Dr. Anthony Fauci

Dr. Rizzo shares the stage with possibly the most trusted person in medicine right now, NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci! Their lively conversation features fascinating insight into the latest COVID-19 news, including aerosol transmission of the virus, advances in vaccine platform technology and lessons learned to guard against future pandemics. What does Dr. Fauci say about the likelihood of eradicating this coronavirus? Listen and learn!

Dr. Ankit Bharat

Episode #2: Double the Miracle: How Double-Lung Transplants Saved COVID-19 Patients with Dr. Ankit Bharat

This past spring, surgeons at Northwestern Medicine in Chicago successfully performed a double-lung transplant for the very first time on a patient whose lungs were severely and irreversibly damaged by COVID-19. Shortly thereafter, the lifesaving operation was repeated in another COVID-19 patient in his 60s. In this episode, Dr. Rizzo (virtually) sits down with Northwestern’s Chief of Thoracic Surgery, Dr. Ankit Bharat, to delve into the details of his headline-making double-lung transplants and what they means for the future. It is a must-listen!

Dr. David Ho on Time magazine cover

Episode #1: COVID-19, Complications & Search for a Cure with Dr. David Ho

In our very-first episode, Dr. Rizzo connects with the legendary Dr. David Ho to discuss the latest in COVID-19 research. Named TIME magazine’s “Man of the Year” in 1996, Dr. Ho is credited with making significant scientific contributions to improve the understanding and treatment of HIV infection. As the founder of Antimicrobe, a database for infectious disease and antimicrobial agents, he has more recently turned his attention to helping to solve the coronavirus pandemic. This episode is not to be missed!

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Episodes run approximately 30-45 minutes for easy listening, while going about your busy day. 

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Page last updated: May 8, 2024

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Freedom From Smoking Clinic
Detroit, MI | May 29, 2024