Member Spotlight: Pulmonary Vascular Research Institute

The Pulmonary Vascular Research Institute (PVRI) is a global charity that brings together the world’s medical professionals with a special interest in pulmonary hypertension (PH) and pulmonary vascular disease (PVD), to raise awareness of the disease, facilitate research and to share best practice in the diagnosis and management of the disease. The PVRI is the only medical society in the field with a worldwide reach.

PH can be more commonly described as high blood pressure in the lungs. It is a fatal illness that can affect people of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds, including children and many fit young athletes. Early diagnosis of the disease is vital.

It is estimated that over 70 million people suffer from PVD, although this figure is generally accepted to closer to 200 million, as the disease is often mis- or undiagnosed due to a lack of awareness and understanding amongst the medical community. No accurate global data on the prevalence of the disease is currently available and there is no cure.

The charity was founded in 2007 by a group of like-minded scientists, working on a voluntary basis and has since grown into a professional membership society with a global network of over 6,500 members in 93 countries. Since its inception, the PVRI has a vision and mission is reduce the global burden of pulmonary vascular disease (PVD) within the next two decades. We will achieve this through global collaboration, striving for excellence in clinical care, research and education in PVD.

The PVRI achieves its mission in the following ways:

Annual Scientific Meetings

The PVRI runs two annual international scientific meetings:

  • The PVRI Annual World Congress on PVD – a four-day meeting, held annually at the end of January
  • The PVRI Annual Drug Discovery & Development Symposium, which brings together academia, industry and drug regulatory bodies. This meeting is annually endorsed by the FDA and EMA and is aimed at early stage drug development.

Pulmonary Circulation Journal

Pulmonary Circulation is the PVRI’s open access, peer-reviewed medical journal. It publishes original research and peer review articles and is the only scholarly journal in the field of pulmonary vascular diseases, with a current Impact Factor of 2.283. The journal gained a first Impact Factor of over 2 in its first six years of publication – a rare achievement that is testament to the quality of scientific content.

PVRI Task Forces

Through the work of the nine Regional Task Forces, the PVRI has a global reach and has become extremely effective in raising the profile of the disease in many different parts of the world. Regional Task Forces organise annual meetings to address unique problems, specific to the disease burden in their region.

The PVRI has nine ‘Disease & Specialty’ Task Forces, which are cross-country collaborative research groups that investigate pulmonary hypertension and its different aspects, such as paediatrics, HIV, pregnancy, exercise, schistosomiasis, etc.

Online education

The PVRI website currently holds over 900 educational materials, including lecture recordings, abstract submissions and atlas images. The organisation is currently developing an online diploma course featuring a series of authentic and anonymised patient cases of PVD, which will replicate a clinician’s path to help managing a patient with pulmonary arterial hypertension. The course library features peer-reviewed learning materials to help inform users decision making with reference to the latest medical guidelines and research.

Global health

The PVRI is currently building a global registry to collect quality data on the global prevalence of the disease. With its membership to the World Health Organization (WHO), World Heart Federation (WHF) and Non-Communicable Disease Alliance (NCDA), the PVRI is ideally placed to implement an effective advocacy campaigns for pulmonary hypertension to be recognised as a global health burden.

For more information, please visit www.pvrinstitute.org.