Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency Program

Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency (sometimes shortened to Alpha-1) is a hereditary condition that can cause liver disease in infants, children, and adults and can also lead to lung disease in adults. National Jewish Health is one of the best places in the world to be treated for the adult lung and liver disease caused by Alpha-1. Our doctors have every necessary tool at their fingertips to diagnose and treat this condition. While we do not treat infants or children with Alpha-1 liver disease, we have a close working relationship with The Children's Hospital in Denver and will make a referral to the appropriate pediatric liver specialist.   

Alpha-1 is one of the most common inherited disorders and accounts for about 1 percent of all COPD (chronic obstructive lung disease) in the United States. Research is constantly being done to develop new therapies. Doctors at National Jewish Health have been involved in virtually every new drug evaluated for Alpha-1. Currently trials are underway or planned to evaluate inhaled therapies and gene therapy for the condition. Our doctors and researchers are always looking for new ways to manage and treat Alpha-1 and other chronic lung diseases.

Doctors at National Jewish Health follow one of the largest groups of Alpha-1 patients in the world. The program here has been devoted to the care of families with Alpha-1 since 1981. Since Alpha-1 is a genetic condition, we invite all immediate family members to participate in the initial visit, if possible.


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Our Specialists

  • Karina A. Serban
    Karina A. Serban, MD
  • Robert A. Sandhaus
    Robert A. Sandhaus, MD, PhD, FCCP

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For more than 100 years, National Jewish Health has been committed to finding new treatments and cures for diseases. Search our clinical trials.

Learn more about Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency Program

Doctors at National Jewish Health follow one of the largest groups of Alpha-1 patients in the country.

Reasons to Visit National Jewish Health

  • The leading respiratory hospital in the nation and the only one devoted fully to the treatment of respiratory and related illnesses
  • Ranked as one of the top two hospitals in pulmonology every year since U.S. News & World Report included this category in its annual “Best Hospitals” survey
  • Ranked in the top 1 percent of hospitals in the nation by HCAHPS
  • Physicians frequently recognized as among the best in the nation by multiple services, including Best Doctors in America and Castle Connolly
  • Among the top 8 percent of organizations funded for research by the NIH, providing patients access to the latest clinical trials
  • 117-year history of focus on care, research and education serving thousands of patients with lung, heart, immune and related disorders


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