Department of Pulmonology and Immunology
Department of Pulmonology and Immunology in the Hospital of Lithuanian University of Health Sciences Kaunas Clinics is the leading place of diagnostics and management in their field.
Department of Pulmonology and Immunology consists of: Division of Pulmonology and Allergy, Sleep Laboratory, Bronchology Unit, Lung Function Testing Unit. There are 2 consulting rooms of Pulmonology, 2 of Allergology and Clinical Immunology and 1 of Clinical Genetics in Out-Patient Division. There is also the Pulmonology laboratory as research unit that formerly was a part of Institute for Biomedical Research.
The Bronchology Unit is the most modern in Lithuania. All modern bronchoscopic diagnostic tools are used here. In 2009 here the firstly started to use the latest and the most advanced minimally invasive diagnostic method in pulmonology – biopsy using endobronchial and endoscopic ultrasound. Efficiency of this diagnostic method is corresponding to surgical procedures and it has low complication rates and high safety. In 2010 our pulmonologists were the first in the Baltic countries to start genetic studies of lung cancer (EGFR mutation testing) that enables the selection of lung cancer patients, who can receive individual treatment with the latest biological therapy drugs.
Department of Pulmonology and Immunology actively cooperates with leading research centers of Ghent (Belgium), Gothenburg and Lund (Sweden), Hull (UK) Universities for many years.
Specialists of the department are actively involved in activities of the Lithuanian Society of Pulmonology and Allergy. Since 2006 journal "Pulmonology, Immunology and Allergy” is published.
The department is responsible for the following undergraduate modules for medical students of the University:
- Chest diseases, allergy and clinical immunology and hematology and oncology for fourth year medical academy students
- Principles of clinical immunology for second and third year veterinary academy students
- Medical genetics for third year veterinary academy students
- Psychogenetics for third year veterinary academy students
Department is performing the following post-graduate residency programs:
- Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Resident doctors who have completed post-graduate studies have the opportunity to choose from the following doctoral degree programs:
- Clinical immunology
- Molecular methods for research
- Interactions of microorganisms and genetic features in patients with internal organ disease
One of the major fields of clinical research is the pathogenesis and pathophysiology, diagnosis and management issues of chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (asthma and COPD). 2001-2005 the Department carried out the research program “Pulmonology and immunology” of Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, and the research project “Genetic factors that predispose chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases”. In collaboration with the Department of Respiratory Medicine and Allergy of Gothenburg University, our Department is carrying out the mutual project CAPTA. Since 2006 coworkers from the Department are actively participating in the activities of global European network consortium of allergy and asthma (GA2LEN). “The Lithuanian association for alpha - 1 antitrypsin research” was established in 2003. Researches of the Department are also interested in the field of respiratory infections, lung cancer, obstructive sleep apnea, allergic diseases and clinical genetics.
Project “The role of phenotype of inflammatory cells and their functions for the prediction of allergic airway diseases”, sponsored by Research Council of Lithuania in the frame on National research program “Chronic Non-Infectious Diseases”, has been successfully executed in 2010-2011. Another ongoing projects are:
1) “Proteasomal gene alleles as risk factors for bronchial asthma in Latvian, Lithuanian and Taiwanese population” (2011-2013).
2) “The role of Th9 cells expression and eosinophil’s activity in the course of allergic airway diseases“(2012-2014).
3) “Immune response in lung cancer” in the frame on National research program “Researcher teams’ projects” (2013-2014)
Since 2001 the doctoral theses were defended by: S. Miliauskas, B. Šitkauskienė, V. Dudzevičius, J. Staikūnienė, M. Žemaitis, A. Vitkauskienė, K. Biekšienė, A. Krisiukėnienė, A. Babušyte, D. Serapinas, D. Urbonienė, N. Vagulienė.