Effectiveness of Low-Dose Theophylline for the Management of Biomass-Associated COPD

  • End date
    Dec 31, 2023
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    University of Miami
Updated on 9 May 2022


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the fourth leading cause of death worldwide, and over 90% of COPD-related deaths occurring in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Household air pollution (HAP) - from burning solid fuels such as wood, dung, agricultural crop waste, and coal for energy - is the primary risk factor for COPD in these settings. Biomass-related COPD has a distinct histopathology, phenotype and inflammatory profile when compared to tobacco mediated COPD. Despite the high global burden of biomass-related disease, little is known about the effectiveness of pharmacotherapies for biomass-related COPD; to date, no clinical trials have focused specifically on treatment of biomass-related COPD. This study proposes to assess the health impact of biomass-related COPD and test the effectiveness of low dose theophylline compared to standard therapy among adults with biomass-related COPD in Uganda with the aim to assess whether low-dose theophylline improves respiratory symptoms, decreases the inflammatory profile of serum biomarkers and whether administration attenuates the effect of HAP on lung function. The study additionally aims to assess whether low-dose theophylline is a cost-effective intervention based on the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio and a range of willingness to pay thresholds.

Condition COPD, COPD Exacerbation, COPD Exacerbation Acute, Pollution Related Respiratory Disorder, Pollution; Exposure
Treatment Placebo Oral Tablet, Standard of Care Treatment, Theophylline ER
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT03984188
SponsorUniversity of Miami
Last Modified on9 May 2022


Yes No Not Sure

Inclusion Criteria

Age ≥ 40 years
Full-time resident of study area
Post-bronchodilator FEV1/FVC < the lower limit of normal of the Global Lung Initiative Mixed Ethnic reference population
Grade B-D COPD
Daily biomass exposure

Exclusion Criteria

Uncontrolled hypertension
Plans to move within one year
Pregnancy (assessed by urine pregnancy test among women of childbearing age/menstrual history)
Current use of chronic respiratory medications (Long acting Beta 2 Antagonists (LABA), Long-acting muscarinic antagonist (LAMA), inhaled corticosteroid (ICS))
History of post-treatment pulmonary tuberculosis
Known intolerance or contraindication to theophylline
≥10 pack year tobacco smoking history
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