Brian Lipworth

+44 (0)1382 383902
Professor of Allergy and Pulmonology (Clinical)




This is a group which I set up with my own funding in 1991 which now enjoys an international reputation for research excellence in the field of clinical airway research. I have clinical and research expertise in respiratory and cardiovascular medicine, along with my original background in clinical pharmacology and therapeutics. This places me in a unique position in terms of my research profile, and particularly with respect to attracting peer reviewed and industry funding.

I have good collaborative relationships with several International pharmaceutical companies and with other universities in Europe and USA.  I have brought in 6.6 M in the last 5 years. I have signed up as commercial research champion with the Tayside Medical Science Centre and am now recruiting into numerous Pharmaceutical sponsored multicenter clinical trials.

To date, clinical research fellows under my supervision have resulted in 22 MD or PhD theses. I take my mentoring role of young fellows very seriously.

It gives me immense pride and satisfaction that three of my research fellows have been appointed to UK chairs – Nigel Wheeldon (Sheffield), David Kiely (Sheffield), Andrew Wilson (Norwich).

Research interests

Significance of Research for NHS

  • Research studies using using health informatics data linkage has identified a defined small airway asthma phenotype which is associated with impaired control (Manoharan et al Eur Respir J 2014; 44: 1353–1355; Lipworth et al Lancet RM 2014;2: 497–506;Jabbal et al J Allergy Clin Immunol 2016;138:601-603)
  • A genotyped database showed a adverse interaction between beta-2 receptor Arg16Gly genotype and use of long-acting beta-2 agonists (Lee et al. Br J Clin Pharmacol 2004:57:68-75, Palmer et al. Thorax 2006;61:940-44, Basu et al. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2009;124:1188-94; Turner et al J Allergy Clin Immunol 2016;138:107-113).  This led to the first RCT showing a personalised genotyped based approach to prescribing (Lipworth et al Clin Sci 2013;124:521-528) 
  • A meta-analysis evaluated potential adverse reactions to NSAIDs and COX2 inhibitors in patients with asthma (Morales et al J Allergy Clin Immunol 2014;134:40-45; Morales et al Allergy 2015;70:828-8) 
  • Health informatics demonstrated the potential for adverse effects of beta-blockers in asthma and concomitant cardiovascular disease (Morales et al BMC Medicine 2017;doi:10.1186/s12916-017-0781-0; Morales et al Br J Clin Pharmacol 2016;82:814-822; Morales et al Chest 2014;145:779-786) 
  • Using a national database, I also showed underuse of beta-blockers in patients with heart failure and COPD, indicating a clinically relevant unmet need in such patients (Lipworth et al Heart 2016;102:1909-1914).In addition I showed that beta-blockers are safe to use in COPD with any beta-2 receptor mediated adverse effects on lung function mitigated by concomitant  long acting muscarinic antagonists (Jabbal et al  QJM 2017;110:785-792) .This in turn led to an NIHR funded randomized  controlled trial  to evaluate the effects of bisoprolol on exacerbations in COPD on which I am co-chief applicant 
  • We showed the impact of the smoking ban on health in bar workers, and received international media coverage (Menzies et al JAMA 2006;296:1742-1748) with an accompanying editorial emphasizing its importance 
  • I have also shown that a novel osmotic bronchial challenge test with mannitol is well tolerated in primary care, to assess airway inflammation, resulting in better long term asthma control (Lipworth et al Chest 2010;141:607-15). A screening programme involving bronchial challenge testing was employed to identify potential overtreatment of patients with adult asthma in the community (Manoharan et al Clin Exp Allergy 2014;44:1240-1245) 
  • Research into the role of the unified allergic airway (Barnes et al Allergy 2007:62:73-80) and the role of  medical polypectomy (Vaidyanathan et al Ann Intern Med 2011;154:293-302)  has driven setting up of a unique one stop combined medical/surgical rhinology service


Dundee Curriculum

I have played a major role in the implementation and development of the new medical curriculum in Dundee. In my capacity as system convener for respiratory teaching (1991-2014), I have been responsible for complete restructuring of the teaching delivered in this area, in which I have always had a significant hands on component. New innovations include the drawing up of an electronic study guide and web based teaching aids.

Postgraduate Teaching

I have previously been involved in teaching and examining for the MRCP PACES, Glasgow postgraduate respiratory medicine course; respiratory education for the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh. I also give regular postgraduate educational lectures to primary and secondary care doctors, both in the UK and abroad.


Single Triple vs Dual Inhaler Therapy
5/2019, Chest
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Letter

Differences in asthma control and lung function in relation to allergic status
3/2019, European Respiratory Journal
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Letter

Cardio-protective effects of inhaled corticosteroid containing combination therapy in COPD
12/2018, European Respiratory Journal
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Letter

Cardioprotective effects of inhaled corticosteroid-containing combination therapy in COPD
12/2018, European Respiratory Journal
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Letter

Comparison of the effect of beclometasone/formoterol in asthma patients after methacholine-induced bronchoconstriction : a non-inferiority study using metered dose versus dry powder inhaler
12/2018, British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Article

Is small airways dysfunction related to asthma control and type 2 inflammation?
8/2018, Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Letter

Inhaled triple therapy in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
9/2018, The Lancet
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Letter

Current appraisal of single inhaler triple therapy in COPD
8/2018, International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Article

Improved lung function and patient-reported outcomes with co-suspension delivery technology glycopyrrolate/formoterol fumarate metered dose inhaler in COPD : a randomized Phase III study conducted in Asia, Europe, and the USA
7/2018, International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Article

Anti-interleukin 13 for asthma : stick or twist?
8/2018, The Lancet Respiratory Medicine
Research Output: Contribution To Journal > Letter

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Gene testing asthmatic children could lead to better treatment

Brian Lipworth, Kaninika Basu, Roger Tavendale, Donald MacGregor, Simon Ogston, Colin Palmer & Somnath Mukhopadhyay


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Research

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