Professor Peter Hopkins

ATH - Professor

Prince Charles Hospital Northside Clinical Unit
Faculty of Medicine



My career in medicine commenced at the University of Queensland, graduating in 1993 with MBBS (Hons 1), University Gold Medal, Alexander Bell and Elizabeth Raff Memorial Prize 1988, Ciba-Giegy Prize 1991 and Certificate of Commendation 1992. I have practiced medicine in multiple jurisdictions around the world including St Vincents Hospital Sydney, New South Wales, The Papworth Institute Cambridge UK and finally Brisbane Queensland since 2003. I am Director of The Queensland Lung Transplant Service since September 2007 and Executive Director Heart and Lung Clinical Stream Metro North Hospital and Healthcare Service. I am recognised internationally as a thought leader in lung transplantation and hold pivotal positions with the peak clinical and professional organisation representing the transplant community, the prestigious International Society of Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT), a non-profit organisation with over 4700 members. I recently completed a three-year appointment as one of only 11 members of the Board of Directors ISHLT, a position with fiduciary responsibilities and establishing the strategic and governance direction of the Society. I am the only Australian to ever Chair the Standards and Guidelines Committee of ISHLT, a body which directs the publication of consensus documents, clinical practice guidelines, statements on training and ethics, and policy statements for our international audience in heart and lung transplantation, mechanical circulatory support and advanced heart and lung failure. Perhaps most prominently, I am Program Chair for the ISHLT 41st Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM) Toronto, Canada April 27-30, 2021 and was Deputy Program Chair for Montreal Canada ASM 2020. I was a leader of the Sydney 2017 bid for ISHLT to hold its 41st Annual Scientific Meeting 2021 in Sydney, the first time ever in Asia Pacific and the southern hemisphere. Due to the COVID 19 Pandemic this venue was changed to Toronto early 2020. I have held executive membership of the ISHLT International Engagement Committee and am subsection leader in clinical transplantation for the Editorial Board of the Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation. I am one of 6 executive members of the Heart and Lung committee, The Transplantation Society: an organisation with global leadership in the science and clinical practice of solid organ transplantation with historical focus on kidney and liver transplant.

Impact on Policy I have had the opportunity to directly influence policy through membership of several peak bodies. I am a member and former Chair of the Lung Advisory Committee to the National Organ & Tissue Authority (OTA), Canberra. OTA was established in 2009 and operates as an independent statutory agency within the Australian Government Health portfolio. Under my leadership as Chair, I was first author of published guidelines regarding organ sharing arrangements for urgently listed patients across jurisdictions, donor management (role of CT imaging and bronchoscopy) and I am now leading efforts to align the Australian and New Zealand Cardiothoracic Organ Transplant Registry with International databases. I promote orphan lung disease research and awareness through membership on the Rare Lung Diseases National Advisory Committee (previously PIVOT) since 2005 and am a founding member of the Australian Interstitial Lung Disease Registry, ensuring demographic and epidemiological trends in prevalence are captured along with influencing the publication of guidelines on diagnosis and management of IPF. I assisted in the establishment of ARNOLD, National Orphan Lung Diseases Registry launched in 2008. I was the only Thoracic member of the National Blood Authority Immunoglobulin Governance and Blood Star Taskforce leading to a change in policy of how IGG and blood products were prescribed and designing Blood Star, the national online portal of prescribing. I have played a prominent role nationally in ensuring more effective organ matching at time of transplant with membership on the National Organ Matching System Strategic governance committee. This has led to the initiation of virtual cross matching, Eplet identification and listing of recommended recipients across programmes. I was senior author on training guidelines for thoracic medicine published in Respirology 2012.

Clinical expertise, leadership and innovation: I am the longest serving Director of the Queensland Lung Transplant Service with a current tenure of 12.5 years and achieved Pre-Eminent Specialist status MO4-1 in 2015 (the highest possible senior status of a clinician in Queensland Health). Under my leadership we have performed 8 complex triple organ (heart-lung-liver) transplants, the only centre in Asia Pacific to do so, pioneered the Donation after Circulatory Death (DCD) program in Queensland now accounting for 26% of all transplants and established Australia’s first ex-vivo organ perfusion program following the awarding of a government grant in 2011, to resuscitate marginal lungs and enhance organ procurement. I co-established the Metro North interventional bronchoscopy service in 2014 to concentrate expertise in airway interventional techniques, a service providing care across Queensland. I co-founded the Queensland interstitial lung disease multi-disciplinary meeting which has adopted a unique telemedicine model allowing centres from Lismore to Cairns to participate – it is the largest in Australia with over 650 presentations since May 2015. I established the lung volume reduction service here at TPCH in 2003, offering hope to patients afflicted with emphysema through novel interventions including endobronchial steam therapy, airway bypass systems and valves along with the conventional surgical approach. I was the primary founder of the Balloon Pulmonary Angioplasty service here in Queensland commencing in 2016 facilitating advanced treatment of patients with inoperable chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension.

Consumer engagement: I have been able to serve my community through my roles as editor in chief Newsletter Australian IPF Registry, speaker for the Lung Foundation Australia at community events, processional member at the annual Donate Life Service of Remembrance City Hall Brisbane and as Secretary of the Pulmonary Fibrosis Australasian Clinical Trials Network (‘PACT’). PACT was established 18 months ago by a group of interested clinicians to design and deliver high quality trials and studies to provide hope and improved outcomes for people living with pulmonary fibrosis. The networks mission is to link consumers, investigators and industry sponsors to drive innovation in research and enhance survival of this devastating disease.

Industry Engagement: I am a clinical advisor to Avalyn Pharma, a biopharma company based in Seattle USA committed to developing novel therapeutics to patients with IPF including inhaled pirfenidone. I have been an advisor to United Therapeutics Corporation, a biotechnology company headquartered in Maryland USA, with this collaboration leading to a first in human study of a novel stem cell line in patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension. I am a member of the Data Safety Monitoring Board for a phase 1 study of an amniotic epithelial cell line in the treatment of patients with compensated cirrhosis. I am to be Principal Investigator (PI) on a first in human study of a novel exosome product for patients with IPF – developed by Regenasome, an Australian biotech which has secured $8 million in venture capital. I have been PI on numerous industry sponsored trials including Pirfenidone in IPF, the ASCEND trial published in NEJM and the world’s second highest recruiter, multiple first in human studies including bronchoscopic thermal vapour ablation (Uptake Medical) and the airway bypass system using paclitaxel coated nickel titanium stents (BRONCHUS technologies). I have been PI on over 20 industry sponsored clinical trials.

Evidence of clinical excellence in research

Publications: I have a total of 111 papers consisting of 97 original articles, 6 editorials, 4 letters and 4 book chapters, with 50 since 2012 and 24 manuscripts as first or senior author. Some of my publication highlights, demonstrating my ability to exert influence and foster collaborations with local and international partners and institutions (including UQ) to create, enable and support high impact research that produces evidence based change in health outcomes:

  • ‘Mesenchymal Stromal Cell Therapy for Chronic Lung Allograft Dysfunction – Results of a First-in-man Study. Stem Cells Translational Medicine. 2017’ and ‘A Phase 1b Study of Placenta-derived Mesenchymal Stromal Cells in Patients with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. Respirology 2014’ which established the feasibility and safety of intravenous cell therapy in humans with advanced lung disease. Senior author both publications.
  • ‘Association of Minimal Acute Rejection with Obliterative Bronchiolitis in lung transplant recipients. Am J Resp Crit Care Med 2004’. This led to a worldwide change in clinical practice in terms of altering the treatment paradigm of such patients. First author.
  • ‘The ASCEND trial – A phase 3 trial of pirfenidone in patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. New England Journal of Medicine 2014’. The first clinical trial to ever show benefit in slowing disease progression in IPF and offer hope to patients afflicted with this chronic lung disease. Second highest recruiter in the world, Co-author.
  • ‘Excellent clinical outcomes from a national donation-after-determination-of-cardiac-death lung transplant collaborative. Am J Transplant 2012’ was the first major initiative of the Australian Lung Transplant Collaborative, of which I am a key member. This paper set the benchmark for the safety and utility of DCD lung transplantation. The practices pioneered by the Collaborative, and the evidence base established by this publication, have now been adopted around the world, increasing transplantation rates by approximately 20% and saving many lives.

    Research funding support: I have been a Chief and co-Investigator on 24 grants and fellowships administered by UQ and other organisations which now total $10,094,879.90. I currently hold 3 NHMRC project grants (two CIB, 1 CIE) and am a CI on a Centre for Research Excellence, administered by UQ, in redefining antimicrobial use to reduce resistance and prolong the clinical utility of antibiotics (REDUCE). I have been awarded 2 international grants sponsored by pharma in a competitive allocation process totalling over $390,000. I have been successful in being awarded two New Technology Grants from the Queensland Government, introducing and refining lifesaving technology in the field of organ transplantation and Balloon Pulmonary Angioplasty for patients with inoperable chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension.

    Invited presentations: Since first being invited to speak at an international meeting in 2008, I have now delivered 12 invited talks and chaired 9 sessions at international meetings. I have delivered numerous other talks and chaired many sessions at national meetings.

    Collaborations: I am grateful for the collaborations I have established with researchers in Australia and overseas. Some of my most important collaborations are the following:

    Prof Peter Soyer and Prof Adele Green (UQ & QIMR) Non-melanotic cutaneous malignancy in solid organ transplant recipients, STAR study). Our collaborative has submitted a Health Systems Improvement grant application via Brisbane Diamantina Health Partners to establish a statewide solid organ transplant skin cancer clinic. This innovative model of care will be run as a UQ initiative.

    Prof Rajiv Khanna, QIMR Berghofer, Autologous and allogeneic T cell therapy for drug refractory viral infection.

    Prof Daniel Weiss, University of Vermont, USA, Cell therapy for lung disease.

    Prof Euan Wallace and Dr Rebecca Lim, Monash, Exosome therapy for lung disease.

    Professor Phil Hugenholtz, Australian Centre for Ecogenomics, UQ. Lung microbiome determination.

Editorial and other contributions to respiratory science: I am on the Senior Editorial Board of the Journal for Heart and Lung Transplantation and have completed over 50 editorial reviews since my appointment. I have also reviewed by invitation for Journal of Cystic Fibrosis, Clinical Transplantation, Internal Medicine Journal, Respirology, MJA and AJT. I am an Up To Date peer reviewer from 2015. Recent appointment is section leader on clinical lung transplantation for JHLT.

Evidence of clinical excellence in teaching

Throughout my career I have had a significant clinical teaching load; mentoring and teaching junior doctors and medical students including international students in formal tutorials and ad hoc daily.

Clinical teaching and training: I have been an executive member of the RACP National Examiners Panel from 2007-2013 then the RACP Seniors Examiners Panel from 2014-2020. I am the lead SMO responsible for registrar FRACP clinical exam preparation and conduct public long cases twice a week from March to July each year TPCH. I was an Invigilator for the RACP written examination 2007-2012 and RACP Content Expert for the 2013 exam. I contribute regularly to medical student education (clinical tutorials, term rotations, examination practice). I have been an FRACP supervisor for respiratory advanced trainees continuously since 2003. I was a Lecturer on the topic of Lung Transplantation with the RACP Lecture series from 2003 to 2012.

Mentoring and HDR training: I was Director of Physician/Advanced training RACP from 2003 to 2012 at TPCH, with over 18 trainees under my care at any given time. I am a mentor to the faculty of the Junior Council, ISHLT and present regularly at the ASM on how to advance one’s career in ISHLT and at an institutional level. I have been a mentor and second PhD reader for multiple UQ Confirmation of Candidatures and reader for M Phil.

Policy impact: I have had the opportunity to take a leading role in the delivery of thoracic and transplant medicine education nationally and internationally. I was Special Interest Convenor TSANZ for Interventional Bronchoscopy 2013 to 2017 and SIG convenor for Orphan lung and interstitial diseases from 2009-2012. I have been on the Program Organising Committee for ISHLT in 2015 Nice and 2016 Washington DC including Lung Liaison. These appointments directly determined Symposia and Plenary session content for these global meetings. I have been an Abstract Reviewer for multiple organisations including ISHLT 2006-2018, The Transplantation Society 2018, TSANZ 2009-2017 and the Transplant Society of ANZ 2015-2019. I was an executive member of the ISHLT Education Committee, responsible for scientific content design and delivery across multiple craft groups.

Evidence based medicine: In my specialised field of medicine, evidence from well-designed clinical trials is often lacking yet I have been a strong advocate for the development of high quality clinical guidelines both here in Australia and internationally. As Chair of the Standards and Guidelines Committee for ISHLT (member since 2013) I am responsible for identifying the need to develop new guidelines relevant to the mission of the society and review proposals to ensure high scientific standard is maintained. Under my purview and stewardship, a record number of new applications for guidelines and consensus documents has been submitted in calendar year 2018 – 10 in total. I act as a liaison between the Scientific councils and the proposed authors of documents, the finance Committee, the Executive Director and the Board of Directors ISHLT to encourage submission and facilitate presentation of well-structured proposals. I have been Project Leader on 3 international focused clinical Guideline Development Committees including Antifungal prophylaxis in cardiothoracic transplantation, classification of Airway complications post lung transplant and joint collaboration with the EACTA on the perioperative and ICU management of the lung transplant recipient. Whilst Chair of the TSANZ Lung Advisory Committee I was first author on the lung section of Clinical Guidelines for Organ Transplantation from Deceased Donors version 1.2 2018. Other examples of my activities in this area are my role as a key member of the Australian Lung Transplant Collaborative which generated the evidence base for donation after cardiac death (DCD) lung transplantation. These guidelines and practices have been disseminated through ISHLT and adopted as standard of care around the world.

Research Impacts

Professor Hopkins is a recognised thought leader in the fields of lung transplantation, interstitial lung disease, interventional bronchoscopy and pulmonary vascular disease. His research contributions to these fields have translated into clinical practice improvements in the management of chronic lung disease including advanced emphysema, pulmonary hypertension, chronic lung allograft dysfunction and those awaiting organ transplantation. His contribution to knowledge in these areas has been recognised through appointment to multiple advisory committees across diverse jurisdictional areas including the National Organ Match system, IGG Governance committee, Blood Star, Chair Lung Advisory Committee for the Transplant Society of Australia and New Zealand, Advisory Panel listing as specialist expert on Coal Workers Pneumoconiosis for Queensland and the Virtual Cross Match Working Group for Queensland, reporting to the Organ and Tissue Authority. He has chaired or contributed to committees and working groups which have developed international consensus statements or guidelines in diverse areas of advanced lung disease including the management of fungal infection in the immunosuppressed, classification of airway complications post lung transplant, perioperative management of the lung transplant recipient and national guidelines in the process of compassionate listing of urgent recipients for lung transplantation and in the diagnosis and management of interstitial lung disease. He founded one of Australia’s largest clinical trial centres focussed on interstitial lung disease operating out of The Prince Charles Hospital, and has collaborated with multiple academic and industry partners to translate new treatments developed in phase 1 studies to clinical practice. His work and dedication to patient care is featured regularly in the Australian media.


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