The Respiratory Sleep and Environmental and Occupational Health Group provides global leadership on research for respiratory, sleep and environmental and occupational health, while solving problems for the patients and communities we serve.

Our researchers work on a wide range of problems in respiratory and sleep medicine and science including asthma, COPD, sleep disorders, tuberculosis, COVID 19 and environmental health. Our work has an important impact on the assessment and management of these conditions globally. Our team includes senior researchers and research students.

We’re active members of the Respiratory Sleep and Environmental and Occupational Health Clinical Academic Group of Maridulu Budyari Gumal (SPHERE).

The group conducts air pollution epidemiology work focussed predominantly on urban air pollution exposures such as traffic, general urban ambient pollution and more recently bushfire and wood heater smoke. It’s currently leading a $1m NHMRC funded study, the Air Pollution, Morbidity and Mortality in Adult Australians (APMMA) Study. In this study we’re investigating the association between exposure to air pollution in NSW and outcomes such as respiratory disease, lung cancer and cardiovascular disease, and premature mortality. The study involves investigators from seven universities across Australia.

We’re also conducting a study to determine the spatial extent of woodsmoke in the Sydney metropolitan area given its estimated substantial contribution to overall particulate matter (PM) exposure in Sydney. While woodsmoke is a demonstrated source of PM in rural and regional areas, there is a lack of data from major Australian cities. This is a modifiable environmental source of pollution.

Much of our work on environmental health is conducted in collaboration with the NHMRC Centre for Air pollution, energy transitions and health Research (CAR). Our team is actively collaborating on research on tuberculosis in Vietnam.

Our goals

  • To prevent, and better treat conditions caused by respiratory and sleep disordersin the following key areas:
    • Respiratory Infections including COVID 19 and tuberculosis.
    • Breathlessness.
    • Sleep Disorders including sleep apnoea.
    • Asthma.
    • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
    • Respiratory failure.
    • Tuberculosis.
  • To conduct world class environmental and clinical epidemiological research which can be translated into policy action.

Research Strengths

  • Epidemiological study methods i.e., study design, analysis, project management.
  • Exposure science methods particularly in relation to air pollution exposure assignment.
  • Biostatistical analytical skills.
  • The diversity in culture, language, and burdens of disease of the local communities we serve.
  • Ongoing collaborations with multiple organisations through Maridulu Budyari Gumal (SPHERE) network which includes UTS and UWS.

Our results

Research from our group has had both local and international impacts relating to the assessment and management of asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, COVID-19 and sleep apnoea and respiratory failure.

Our air pollution study findings and submissions to government inquiries and guideline development processes have informed government health, environment, planning and transport agencies on various policies and guidelines.

Our TB work in Vietnam is changing the global approach to TB elimination.

Our experts

Professor of Respiratory Medicine Guy Marks
Professor of Respiratory Medicine
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 Hima Vedam
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Staff Specialist Respiratory Medicine Yewon Chung
Staff Specialist Respiratory Medicine
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Our affiliate partners

We work in conjunction with primary care, community, and Non-Government organisation health sectors and partner with pre-eminent organisations in this space, including: