Abstract
Introduction: Few aspects of the management of patients with bronchiectasis have a strong evidence base and the scientific community recognizes an urgent need for additional research. Developing a European consensus on priorities will help inform funding bodies. Methods: The EMBARC research roadmap working group identified basic and clinical research priorities in the field of bronchiectasis focused on both stable state and exacerbations. An initial comprehensive list of research questions was then reduced to key priorities by consensus within the group using a modified Delphi process. 100 experts from the EMBARC network were then asked to grade research priorities from most to least important. Results: Over 300 research questions were initially identified which was then reduced to 55 by consensus. Following grading, the 8 most important research priorities identified were: 1) What is the role of Pseudomonas eradication? 2) What is the optimal type and duration of antibiotic therapy for exacerbations? 3) What are the characteristics of colonization, chronic and acute infections across Europe? 4) What are the risk factors for fast progression and poor outcomes? 5) What is the impact of long-term antibiotic therapy on resistance? 6) When should a long-term antibiotic therapy be started and what would be endpoints for efficacy? 7) What are the key factors leading to Pseudomonas colonization? 8) What are the indications of oral versus inhaled long-term antibiotic therapy? Conclusions: Identifying research priorities in the field of bronchiectasis might help in focusing efforts and establishing collaborative research in this field.