There are a number of known genetic and environmental prenatal risk factors linked to long-term alterations in lung structure and function. A better understanding of prenatal risk factors and the successful application of preventative screening and treatment, plus effective public awareness campaigns, are essential to help improve lung development and respiratory health throughout life.
At this year's Congress we have a selection of sessions focusing on or feeding into this area. Addressing both genetics and environment, these sessions include a symposium on urban air pollution and human health, a range of thematic posters and oral presentations looking at areas such as common mechanisms in lung development and fibrosis, and the origins of infant pulmonary disease. Additionally, there is a planned paediatric respiratory medicine group members' meeting which will bring together experts in the field for topical discussion.
Chair of the ERS Paediatric Respiratory Epidemiology group, highlighted "The fetal origins hypothesis is a widely explored field of research for clinical and basic scientists. Studying the pathology that occurs in the fetal and early stages of life gives us key insights into the complex respiratory diseases that we see in both children and adults. We know, for example, that asthma and COPD result from a multifaceted interaction between environmental exposures and many genetic risk factors, which could be traced back to birth. The sessions at this year's Congress will be a good opportunity to explore up to date developments and to consider how best we can utilise this knowledge for prevention purposes and improving the quality of life for patients living with respiratory disease."
Join the Paediatric Assembly on MyERS.
If you are interested in this topic, here is a list of associated sessions at this year's Congress. Alternatively, you can browse the full programme.
Note: Educational sessions (postgraduate courses, skills workshops, challenging clinical cases, professional development workshops and meet the expert sessions) can be attended at an additional cost to the standard registration fee.