Dr. Christopher Carlsten – BA, MD, MPH, FRCPC, ABIM

Director, Centre for Lung Health
Professor and Division Head, Respiratory Medicine, UBC


Dr. Christopher Carlsten is director of the Centre for Lung Health, a professor and head of the Respiratory Medicine Division at the University of British Columbia (UBC). He is the Canada Research Chair in Occupational and Environmental Lung Disease and holds the Astra-Zeneca Chair in Occupational and Environmental Lung Disease at UBC. He is the director of Legacy for Airway Health and the Air Pollution Exposure Laboratory, the lead for the UBC Faculty of Medicine’s Personalized Health initiative, and holds adjunct positions at the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies and the UBC School of Population and Public Health. He attended undergraduate and medical school at Stanford University before training in internal, occupational, pulmonary and critical care medicine at the University of Washington.

Dr. Carlsten’s clinical and research interests center on occupational airways disease, including the effects of diesel exhaust and other inhaled exposures on asthma induction and exacerbation. His laboratory investigates the cardio-pulmonary-immunological health effects of inhaled environmental and occupational exposures, using diesel exhaust, western red cedar and phthalates as model inhalants. Across these domains, he focuses on community-partnered engagement, reducing disparities, and narrowing the gaps between the academic and applied realms of health care, prevention and related policy.

As Director of the Occupational Lung Disease Clinic at The Lung Centre (Vancouver General Hospital), Dr. Carlsten welcomes patients with concerns regarding occupational or environmental exposures contributing to respiratory disease — particularly asthma and COPD, but also upper airway disorders, interstitial lung disease, cancer, and pleural disease.

The Carlsten laboratory focuses on the respiratory and immunological health effects of inhaled environmental and occupational exposures, using diesel exhaust, western red cedar, wood smoke, and phthalates as model inhalants, in order to inform public health interventions and policy.

Dr. Carlsten is thrilled to have called Vancouver home since 2007, and is grateful to this vibrant community for fostering an unparalleled setting not only for his professional pursuits but moreover for his family and their passion for engagement within a healthy environment.

Areas of interest:

Air pollution; Controlled inhalation models; Effects of complex inhaled exposures; Translational research; Effects of genetics on pollutant effect; Stakeholder engagement

Current studies:

Air Pollution Exposure Laboratory (APEL)
Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute

Contact info:

Air Pollution Exposure Laboratory (APEL)
  Legacy for Airway Health