idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

Nachrichten, Termine, Experten

Grafik: idw-Logo
Thema Corona

Science Video Project

idw-News App:


Google Play Store

Share on: 
01/24/2023 16:29

Joining forces for research on asthma, allergy, and airways

Press Contact: Elin Lindström, phone +46 31 786 30 37, email Kommunikationsavdelningen / Communications Department
Schwedischer Forschungsrat - The Swedish Research Council

    “Breathe Sweden”, a digital platform for researchers who collect studies on diseases and disorders of the respiratory tract, has now been launched. The initiative enhances scope for Nordic collaboration in large population studies.

    In 2022 the platform “Andas Sverige” was launched to enable the Swedish-speaking public to find nonspecialist information about current research on respiratory disorders and diseases. “Breathe Sweden” is now to be an English-language sister platform for collaboration among researchers in asthma, allergy, and respiratory research.

    The work on Andas Sverige and Breathe Sweden is led by researcher Bright Nwaru and his group at the Krefting Research Centre, University of Gothenburg, jointly with other researchers such as Helena Backman of Umeå University.

    “Breathe Sweden affords better scope for mutual understanding and collaboration in solving various research questions among researchers in the field of respiratory disorders and allergies. It’s a platform that brings together data from several large population studies, which boosts capacity” Bright Nwaru sais.

    Boundary-crossing collaborations

    Nwaru gives an example of research that can be implemented thanks to the Breathe Sweden initiative and may culminate in means of distinguishing various subtypes of asthma in adults.

    “Based on two of the large population studies included, it’s now going to be possible to investigate how the interplay between heredity and environment is expressed in adults with asthma. Thanks to the huge quantity of data, we can implement sophisticated data-driven methods in the research field known as phenotyping. This could bring about precision medicine for every subtype of asthma,” Nwaru says.

    The researchers’ Breathe Sweden platform is entirely in English.

    “Our hope is that we’re now creating better conditions for joint projects in asthma, allergy, and respiratory research, where we can collaborate in large population studies across the Nordic regional and national borders,” says Helena Backman, researcher at Umeå University and Region Norrbotten.

    Population studies in a single location

    The Breathe Sweden platform has just been launched and is accessed at To date, it has collected Sweden’s seven biggest population studies in allergy and respiratory health. Together, these studies include data on some 350,000 people with various forms of respiratory impairment. More studies are still being invited to join the platform.

    The seven studies at the time of launching are:

    WSAS (West Sweden Asthma Study) — University of Gothenburg

    OLIN (Obstructive Lung Disease in Northern Sweden) — Region Norrbotten and Umeå University

    CWS (Children of Western Sweden) — University of Gothenburg

    BAMSE (Swedish abbreviation for Children, Allergy, Milieu, Stockholm, Epidemiology) — Karolinska Institutet

    SCIFI-PEARL (Swedish Covid-19 Investigation for Future Insights — A Population Epidemiology Approach Using Register Linkage) — University of Gothenburg

    SNAR (Swedish National Airway Register) — Region Norrbotten and University of Gothenburg

    STOPPA (Swedish Twin study On Perinatal characteristics to Prevent Asthma) — Karolinska Institutet

    The Andas Sverige and Breathe Sweden initiative is part of STELLAR (Respiratory Epidemiology Research Platform), which is funded by the Swedish Research Council. The Andas Sverige website provides brief summaries of studies conducted in the projects. These summaries contribute to the platform in a nonspecialist way. The website addresses the public, research participants, funders, and other interested parties.

    Links to more information:

    Andas Sverige: a nonspecialist website that addresses the public, patients, decisionmakers, funders, and participants in research studies, (in Swedish)

    WSAS: Since 2008, 42,000 people have taken part in the West Sweden Asthma Study, a research project conducted by the Krefting Research Center at the University of Gothenburg,

    Bright Nwaru Group:

    Contact for scientific information:

    Helena Backman, researcher at Umeå University and project leader of the OLIN studies, is collaborating with Bright Nwaru in the Breathe Sweden initiative,


    Bright Nwaru, University of Gothenburg, phone +46 760 642 614, email

    Helena Backman, Umeå University and Region Norrbotten , phone +46 702 108 900, email

    Original publication:

    OLIN: Over 30 years, 50,000 people participated in the Obstructive Lung Disease in Norrbotten (OLIN) research study, (scroll down for “In English – the OLIN-studies”)
    Breathe Sweden: a new collective website that caters for researchers studying diseases affecting the respiratory tract,

    More information:


    Criteria of this press release:
    transregional, national
    Transfer of Science or Research



    Search / advanced search of the idw archives
    Combination of search terms

    You can combine search terms with and, or and/or not, e.g. Philo not logy.


    You can use brackets to separate combinations from each other, e.g. (Philo not logy) or (Psycho and logy).


    Coherent groups of words will be located as complete phrases if you put them into quotation marks, e.g. “Federal Republic of Germany”.

    Selection criteria

    You can also use the advanced search without entering search terms. It will then follow the criteria you have selected (e.g. country or subject area).

    If you have not selected any criteria in a given category, the entire category will be searched (e.g. all subject areas or all countries).