A respiratory epidemiologist by training (PhD and DSc of Epidemiology and Public health (Medical School, University Paris XI) (1987), Master of Aerosols (Medical School, University Paris XII) (1983), Master of Epidemiology and Public health (Medical School, University Paris XI) (1982)), Dr Isabella Annesi-Maesano (IAM) was initially educated in physics and medicine. Her training in epidemiology was completed by a post-doctoral fellowship at the Department of Public Health Sciences at St George’s Hospital, in London, UK. Since 1983 she has been a researcher at the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research in the field of the epidemiology of allergic and respiratory diseases, where she is presently Directeur de Recherche and Director of the Department of Epidemiology of Allergic and Respiratory Diseases (EPAR) of UMR-S 707.
Ongoing studies leaded by IAM deal with the effects of environment and air pollution on allergic respiratory diseases in urban (GERIE Study in elderly people, HESE, HESEINT and SINHONIE Studies in children (all DG-SANCO)) and rural settings (FERMA Study in adults and children), gene-environment interactions in asthma and allergies (EGEA Study), the effects of early life environment on the development of immunity, asthma and allergy in newborns (EDEN Birth Cohort Study and MedALL (FP7)), aetiology of wheeze bronchitis (WB Study) and the epidemiology of interstitial diseases of the lung. Lastly, IAM has started working on respiratory health effects of climate change and wildfires, a climate change related event. Previous studies conducted by IAM concerned a 10-year follow-up of Parisian workers in order to assess risk factors for COPD and the 6 Cities Study, the French contribution to the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC) both in metropolitan France and in the Overseas Department, which insisted on the association between indoor and outdoor air-pollution and asthma and allergies.
IAM is collaborating in WHO ARIA and GARD and ISAAC initiatives conducting epidemiological studies on the prevalence, severity and environment determinants of allergic and respiratory diseases in Africa (Afrique francophone, Mozambique and Cap Vert) as well as French Polynesia and New Caledonia. Recently, a collaboration has started with China in the frame of the Société Sino-Françaises des Sciences.
IAM is Professor of Environmental Epidemiology (Master level) at University Paris VI, of Respiratory Epidemiology (PhD level) at University Paris VI; and director of PhD and Master Students. She is involved in the European Respiratory Society (Head of the Occupation and Epidemiology Assembly) and the International Union Against Tuberculoses and Lung Diseases (Chair and Programme Secretary of the Respiratory Diseases Section).
IAM is the author and co-author of almost 200 international and national peer-reviewed articles, books and reports and serves as a consultant for many national and international institutions such as WHO, EC, Sociétés savantes.... She is one of the editors of the Respiratory Epidemiology Monograph. She has given over 200 lectures and presentations at various meetings. In recognition of her contributions to epidemiology of allergic and respiratory disease, she has received several national and international awards, including one from the Medical Research Council, UK.
IAM serves also as Associate Editor of the editorial boards of: European Respiratory Journal, International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, BMC Public Health, Therapeutic Advances in Respiratory Disease, Multidisciplinary Respiratory Medicine Respiratory Multidisciplinary Review and at the national level La lettre du pneumologue. She has served as Associate Editor of Allergy.
Contact information: Dr I. Annesi-Maesano, EPAR Department, UMR-S 707 INSERM and UPMC Paris VI, Medical School St Antoine, 27, rue Chaligny, 75012 Paris, France. Phone: +33144738449, Fax: www: +3314474738454 firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
The Epidemiology of Allergic and Respiratory diseases (EPAR) department at UMR-S 707 UPMC and INSERM, Medical School St-Antoine, Paris, directed by Dr Isabella Annesi-Maesano is one of the France’s leading centres for epidemiological research on allergic and respiratory diseases. EPAR has conducted several surveys in order to estimate the prevalence and the severity of allergic and respiratory diseases and to identify their etiology. Risk factors taken into account are: genetic, individual, environmental, socio-economic, and demographic. Recent work in EPAR has focussed on the quantification of human exposure to environmental factors and on health impacts. Recent publications deal with respiratory effects of indoor and outdoor air pollution and climate change. Air pollutants of interest have been numerous including emerging pollutants such as airborne particulate matter (mass, number, concentration), VOCs and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. In all the projects, the work is interfaced with metrology and expology. Previous studies concerned a 10-year follow-up of Parisian workers in order to assess risk factors for COPD and the 6 Cities Study, the French contribution to the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC) both in metropolitan France and in the Overseas Department, which insisted on the association between indoor and outdoor air-pollution and asthma and allergies. The EPAR department implemented studies on health effects of indoor pollution in the frame of the Housing and Health Study and to FERMA (WHO LARES project (Large analysis and review of European housing and health status), the Observatoire de la Qualité de l'air and the 6 Cities Study and FERMA studies where various pollutants and health indicators were assessed objectively.
The EPAR department is presently leading the GERIE study on health effects of air quality in elderly living in nursing homes (DG-Sanco funded project) and contributes to the HESE (Health Effects of School Environment) study and the related intervention study (HESEINT) and SINPHONIE Study (DG-Sanco funded project) still on the effects of air pollution in schoolchildren. Ongoing studies of the EPAR department deal with the effects of rural environment and pollution on asthma and allergy (FERMA Study), gene-environment interactions in asthma and COPD (FERMA Study), the effects of early life environment on the development of immunity, asthma and allergy in newborns (EDEN Birth Cohort Study) and aetiology of wheeze bronchitis (WB Study) and asthma and allergies (MedALL, FP7 funded project). Very recently, the EPAR department has started working on respiratory health effects of climate changes related events including wildfires (PHASE (DG-Sanco funded project)).
One of the aims of the different projects is to assess the validity of biomarkers to estimate exposure (e.g. by comparing them to exposure estimates based on environmental measurements) and their association to health. The EPAR department is also collaborating in WHO ARIA and GARD initiatives conducting epidemiological studies on the prevalence, severity and environment determinants of allergic and respiratory diseases in Africa (Afrique francophone, Mozambique and Cap Vert). Biobanks including DNA have been or are being constituted for each study. Biomarkers of exposure to air pollutants are under identification.
Key qualifications of the EPAR department directed by Dr I. Annesi-Maesano include: modelling of allergic and respiratory effects of environmental exposures including atmospheric pollution and climate changes. In this respect, models for the multi-pollution phenomenon are developed. Extensive experience in the respiratory epidemiology related fields – epidemiological methodology, statistical methodology, model verification data analysis, interpretation, etc. Practical experience in development and application of air pollution models for various scales and compounds – acidifying, toxic, aerosols, allergenic species, moulds, etc.