What is Alpha-1?

Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (Alpha-1) is a genetic disorder that affects the lungs. Typically people with Alpha-1 present with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or severe asthma. Ireland has one of the highest rates of AATD in the world. 1 in 25 Irish people are carriers for the condition and are at risk of lung disease, particularly if they smoke.
AATD is under-diagnosed and delays in diagnosis are common. World Health Organisation guidelines for Alpha-1 advocate screening of all COPD patients and poorly-controlled severe asthmatics. As COPD affects approximately 200,000 individuals in Ireland and 1 in 10 Irish adults are diagnosed with asthma, there is a clear need to increase awareness of AATD among these populations.
This application is for the production of a short animated film that clearly explains Alpha-1, why it happens, how to test for it, and how it is treated. This will be targeted specifically at those with COPD and severe asthma. The film has two aims, firstly to increase levels of awareness of this condition amongst people with COPD and severe asthma and secondly to increase rates of diagnosis of AATD.
There are strong links between COPD Support Ireland, the Asthma Society of Ireland and the Alpha One Foundation. We envisage this short animated film can be shared with these patient groups and shown at patient support group meetings and conferences. We aim to launch the animated film in collaboration with COPD Support Ireland and Asthma Society of Ireland on World COPD Day in November 2016.

Award Date
23 October 2015
Award Value
Principal Investigator
Ms Kitty O'Connor
Host Institution
Alpha One Foundation
Knowledge Exchange and Dissemination Scheme