As we approach World Aspergillosis Day this year, our commitment is not just to mark the date but to significantly amplify efforts in raising awareness about this little-known condition.
Aspergillosis has a profound impact on those it affects, along with their families and loved ones. This fungal condition, caused by the aspergillus fungus, remains a ubiquitous yet hidden adversary, primarily affecting individuals with existing lung complications such as asthma, COPD, tuberculosis, and cystic fibrosis. It also poses a significant risk to those undergoing cancer treatment or recovering from organ transplants.
Its rarity and diagnostic complexity often lead to misdiagnoses, and many patients take years to be diagnosed. Its presentation, often similar to lung cancer with fungal nodules, emphasises the urgent need for increased awareness and targeted education among both healthcare professionals and the public.
This year, we continue to raise awareness and demystify the different forms of aspergillosis – Chronic Pulmonary Aspergillosis (CPA), Allergic Bronchopulmonary Aspergillosis (ABPA), and Invasive Aspergillosis – each with its unique challenges and treatment approaches.
This World Aspergillosis Day 2024 will again see the National Aspergillosis Centre taking a proactive stance in disseminating knowledge about this elusive disease with a series of seminars. These sessions will delve into impact, emerging research, breakthroughs in diagnostic methodologies, and evolving treatment strategies. Additionally, we will spotlight personal stories from patients, offering a human face to the statistics and further fostering a community of support and understanding. By bringing together experts, patients, and the general public, we aim to foster a better understanding of aspergillosis, promote research, reduce misdiagnoses and time to diagnosis and improve the lives of those affected by this condition.
We encourage everyone, from medical professionals, patients, and families of sufferers to individuals interested in learning more about this rare condition, to join us. Your participation is a step towards raising the profile of aspergillosis and making it a more recognised and manageable health issue.
The speakers for this year’s seminar series are as follows, though please note that changes may occur:
09:30 Professor Paul Bowyer, The University of Manchester
Why do you get aspergillosis?
10:00 Dr Margherita Bertuzzi, The University of Manchester
Understanding fungal spore interactions in the lungs to develop new strategies to treat aspergillosis
10:30 Professor Mike Bromley, the University of Manchester
Use of fungicides and how they may impact clinical resistance
11:00 Professor David Denning, The University of Manchester
How many patients with aspergillosis are in the world
11:30 Dr Norman Van Rhijn, The University of Manchester
Fungal diseases in a changing world; challenges and opportunities
11:50 Dr Clara Valero Fernandez, The University of Manchester
New antifungals: overcoming new challenges
12:10 Dr Mike Bottery, The University of Manchester
How Aspergillus evolves drug resistance
12:30 Jac Totterdell, The Aspergillosis Trust
The work of the Aspergillosis Trust
12:50 Dr Chris Kosmidis, The National Aspergillosis Centre
Research projects at NAC
13:10 Dr Lily Novak Frazer, Mycology Reference Centre Manchester (MRCM)
The seminar series will be held virtually on Microsoft Teams on Thursday, 1 February 2024, 09:30- 12:30 GMT.
You can register for the event by clicking here.
Join us in raising awareness! Our collection of graphics can help you spread the word and show your support. We have informative infographics, banners and logos in various colours, click here to visit our graphics page.