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The Centre for Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology (AACI) (Birmingham, United Kingdom)

         

THE CENTRE FOR ALLERGY, ASTHMA AND CLINICAL IMMUNOLOGY, BIRMINGHAM, UK

Introduction:
The centre for Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology (AACI) in Birmingham is one of the largest centres in the UK offering a comprehensive multidisciplinary service for patients with allergies & allergic diseases, asthma and primary immunodeficiency disorders. It positions the patient at the heart of its service and is committed to a personalised management to achieve best clinical outcomes and an enhanced health-related quality of life. Its ethos is to embed research, training and teaching into routine clinical practice through a multidisciplinary collaborative approach. The centre involves patients and public partners in shaping its service and delivering cost-effective healthcare. The AACI is firmly committed to global health and addressing health inequalities in the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic population.

Clinical Services

  • These are based at University Hospitals Birmingham (UHB) NHS Foundation Trust and comprise a multi-disciplinary team of healthcare professionals. 
  • The adult allergy service takes pride to have been the first centre in the UK to be accredited by The Royal College of Physicians under the national accreditation programme (Improving Quality in Allergy Services; IQAS) in 2016. https://allergyandimmunology.heartofengland.nhs.uk/
  • The primary immunodeficiency service was also accredited by The Royal of College of Physicians through a similar programme (Quality in Primary Immunodeficiency Services; QPIDS) in 2018.
  • The Birmingham Regional Severe Asthma Service (BRSAS) is arguably one of the first severe asthma centres to be established in Europe and was commissioned as a regional severe asthma centre since 2013 by National Health Service England.
  • The occupational asthma and occupational lung disease unit comprises a multidisciplinary team which is amongst the most experienced in the UK and Europe in assessing and managing work-related respiratory diseases. https://www.brumocclung.org/
  • These services are supported by a comprehensive regional and nationally accredited (United Kingdom Accredited Service; UKAS) allergy and immunology laboratory that provides a diagnostic service for allergic, autoimmune and immunodeficiency disorders.

Research

  • The AACI group in Birmingham has outstanding research output as evidenced by its research grants and publications in a wide range of high impact clinical and scientific journals. 
  • There is a programme of research into anaphylaxis, food allergy, penicillin allergy, epidemiology of allergic diseases and autoimmune disorders, allergen-specific immunotherapy and laboratory diagnosis.
  • The centre has contributed to the British Society for Allergy and Clinical Immunology (BSACI) national guidelines in venom allergy, allergen-specific immunotherapy for allergic rhinitis and penicillin allergy and led on multiple national audits for the BSACI.
  • The severe asthma service has multiple projects in genetics, biomarkers and phenotyping, non-adherence identification and management, biologics, complex breathlessness and psychology, obesity and sleep disordered breathing, and upper and large airway dysfunction syndromes.
  • There is a program of research into occupational asthma. 
  • The immunodeficiency service participates in multiple high profile national and international projects including 100k genome, BRIDGE and novel therapies in hereditary angioedema.
  • The academic unit at the University has undertaken ground-breaking work in peptide immunotherapy in allergic and autoimmune diseases and more recently in COVID-19 serology.
  • The clinical service works closely in collaboration with academic groups within the university for research in basic science, translational work and epidemiology.  https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/research/immunology-immunotherapy/index.aspx
  • Furthermore, there is a research programme in drug allergy undertaken in collaboration with The School of Pharmacy. A global programme of research into drug allergy has been launched recently. https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/pharmacy/index.aspx

Training and Education

AACI is nationally recognised for postgraduate training by the UK General Medical Council. It is one of the few UK centres that provides a comprehensive postgraduate training programme for UK and international Fellows in all aspects of AACI. The AACI and academic groups in the University also contribute to undergraduate curriculum.

EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP:

Head of Allergy & Immunology; Lead for Primary Immunodeficiency

Academic Lead for Allergy; Head of Postgraduate School of Pathology*, West Midlands Health Education England

West Midlands Regional Lead for Severe and Difficult Asthma and Clinical & Academic Lead for Asthma

Occupational Asthma

Allergy & Immunology Laboratory

Institute of Immunology & Immunotherapy

Clinical Pharmacy

Dr AP Huissoon

Prof MT Krishna

Prof AH Mansur

Dr G Walters

Mrs S Beck

Prof D Wraith

Prof J Marriott

*includes Allergy/Immunology, microbiology & infectious diseases, histopathology and chemical pathology & metabolic medicine         

Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, UK

Birmingham Heartlands Hospital, Birmingham, UK

Medical School, The University of Birmingham, UK

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