Home CHEST Thought Leaders Women in Pulmonary Webinar–Sex and Gender Differences in Diagnosing and Treating Asthma, COPD, and ILD

Women in Pulmonary Webinar–Sex and Gender Differences in Diagnosing and Treating Asthma, COPD, and ILD

Both sex and gender differences are poorly portrayed in many aspects of lung development and disease and terminology often misused. It is evident, however, that female sex and gender play a clear role in many aspects of lung physiology, biology, and pathology. This role may translate into differences in disease susceptibility, presentation, severity and associated outcomes, as well as response to treatment. Pharmacodynamics and drug metabolism may also differ by sex, with recommendations for different dosing regimens of certain drugs in females.

Sex and Gender webinarNearly every cell in the human body has a sex and the latter can influence cell function. Hence, the large gap in the understanding of the role of sex in disease presentation, diagnosis, and treatment is surprising.

An upcoming webinar hosted by CHEST will be moderated by Dr. Ghada Bourjeily, with a panel including Drs. Sonye Danoff, Dawn Demeo, and Joe Zein. They will discuss essential information on what sex and gender differences clinicians should be taking into consideration when treating their female patients with asthma, COPD, and ILD.

“Given that the focus on precision medicine and the study of sex and gender in many fields is relatively new, gaps in the understanding of sex and gender exist with most lung diseases,” stated Dr. Bourjeily on the topic. “Investigating and managing patients without taking sex and gender into account could be as imprecise as the omission of a patient’s age from clinical decision making.”

This webinar will cover topics on:

  • Ways to recognize differences between women and men in COPD, asthma, and ILD susceptibility; symptom presentation, morbidity and mortality; and how to apply this to clinical practice
  • The effects of gender and sex hormones on asthma severity over a lifetime
  • Gender-based precision care

This webinar is for all practicing clinicians with male and female patients dealing with these pulmonary diseases as well as researchers interested in better understanding the impact of sex and gender on lung diseases. The webinar is Monday, April 23, from 2-3 pm CST

Register for the webinar.


Ghada Bourjeily

Ghada Bourjeily, MD, FCCP

Dr. Bourjeily is Associate Professor of Medicine at The Miriam Hospital and Brown University and a member of the divisions of pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine and obstetric medicine. Dr. Bourjeily runs the lung disease in pregnancy program and is Director of Research and Training at the Miriam Hospital's Women's Medicine Collaborative. She is ex-officio of the Women's Health NetWork and a member of the Advisory Committee of Women in Pulmonary at CHEST. 

She has had a long standing interest in sex differences in lung disease and women’s health and has been a strong advocate for women’s health at Chest.  Dr. Bourjeily is currently funded by The National Institutes of Health and has received multiple foundations’ grants, including the CHEST Foundation Women’s Lung Health Grant to examine lung disease and sleep in pregnancy.


Sonye Danoff

Sonye Danoff, MD, PhD, FCCP

Dr. Danoff is an Associate Professor of Medicine in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Co-Director of the Interstitial Lung Disease Program, as well as Associate Director of the Myositis Center.  She is a graduate of Emory University, received her MPhil in Pharmacology from Cambridge University, and her MD and PhD degrees from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 

Dr. Danoff is a specialist in interstitial lung disease with a particular focus in autoimmune-associated interstitial lung diseases. Her research involves clinical and translational studies of interstitial lung disease and autoimmunity. She is particularly focused on myositis-associated ILD in the context of the multidisciplinary Myositis Center.  Dr. Danoff has been on the faculty of Johns Hopkins since 2000 where she is actively involved in patient care, teaching, and research.  She is a Fellow of the American College of Chest Physicians and is the past Chair of the Interstitial and Diffuse Lung Disease NetWork Steering Committee. 

Dawn DeMeoDawn DeMeo, MD, MPH

Dr. DeMeo is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a faculty member in the Channing Division of Network Medicine and Pulmonary and Critical Care Division at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.  She has had a long-standing interest in sex and gender issues as they are related to lung health and lung disease. To pursue her interest in understanding COPD in women, she has been the recipient of grants from the National Institutes of Health, the American Lung Association, and the Alpha-1 Foundation for the investigation of genetic and epigenetic features of sex differences and COPD.

Dr. DeMeo’s vision includes streamlining effective multidisciplinary care for COPD through careful scientific investigations with an eventual goal of designing and implementing specialized treatment for COPD informed by needs specific to genetic susceptibility and other risk factors, as well as sensitivity to social (gender) and other biological (sex hormone-related) aspects of COPD and lung health.

Joe ZeinJoe Georges Zein, MD, FCCP

Dr. Zein is a physician-scientist whose primary research interest is to study the effects of aging, gender, and sex hormones on asthma severity over the life course. He was the first to show that asthma is more severe in older patients even after adjusting for asthma duration and age-related comorbidities indicating that lung aging is a risk for asthma severity. As a pulmonary and critical care board certified physician, he focuses on asthma, genetics of asthma, population health, health-care utilization and cost-effectiveness.

Dr. Zein has been committed to develop a career as a physician-investigator and was accepted to the Clinical Research Scholarship Program (CRSP) at Case Western Reserve University. He was matriculated to the PhD program at Case Western Reserve University with a focus on genetic epidemiology and plans to graduate in December 2018. Currently, he is also an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine.

Register for the FREE webinar.

A special thank you to our generous supporters and partners, AstraZeneca, Boehringer Ingelheim, and Genentech for making this program possible.