The Alpha-1 Foundation Ireland was established in 2001 to raise awareness of Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency...

THE ALPHA-1 FOUNDATION IRELAND increase diagnosis of Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency...

THE ALPHA-1 FOUNDATION IRELAND promote research into Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency...


...and to improve the treatment of Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency.


Supports a smoke-free Ireland...


And promotes lung health and organ donor awareness.



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The Alpha-1 Foundation Ireland was founded in 2001 and is based in the RCSI Education and Research Centre at Beaumont Hospital.

We are dedicated to raising awareness, increasing diagnosis, promoting research, and improving the treatment of Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency (Alpha-1).

Our vision is that every person with Alpha-1 in Ireland is diagnosed and receives specialist care and treatment in a timely fashion.


Info Centre

What is Alpha-1 Antitrypsin?

Alpha-1 antitrypsin is a vital protein produced by the liver to protect the lungs. It provides protection from the harmful effects of infections and inhaled irritants, particularly tobacco smoke. It can be easily measured by a simple blood test.

What is Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency?

Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (Alpha-1) is a genetic condition which, after cystic fibrosis, is the commonest genetic disorder in Ireland. It severely affects more than 15,000 people, with another 250,000 carriers also at risk of lung and liver disease on the island of Ireland. It is a proven genetic risk factor for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

How Do I Get Tested?

The Alpha One Foundation provides free testing for Alpha-1 as part of a national screening programme which is funded by the HSE. For more details ring 01-8093871 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Short Film - What is Alpha 1

Commissioned by the Alpha One Foundation in collaboration with COPD Support Ireland and funded by the Health Research Board, this educational film describes the genetic condition alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (Alpha-1 for short). People born with Alpha-1 do not produce enough alpha-1 antitrypsin, an important protein which protects the lungs. They therefore have increased risk for the lung disease chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). 1 in 25 Irish people carry the defective gene that causes Alpha-1.

Our latest news

A selection of our most recent news stories are highlighted below. The full catalog of our news can be viewed by clicking on the "view all news" button below or by following the links in the menu at the top of the page.

Report from Alpha-1 Conference 2017

The Annual Alpha-1 Patient Conference took place again this year in the Marino Institute of Education in Drumcondra in Dublin on Friday, October 20th. Over 60 Alphas and family members attended with plenty of familiar faces as well as a lot of first time attendees.

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It's never too late to quit

Smoking is the number one risk factor for lung disease in those born with Alpha-1. The European Lung Foundation and the European Respiratory Society describe the benefits of quitting smoking in two excellent diagrams. Remember no matter how late in life one quits there are benefits to be gained. Avoiding smoking at all costs is incredibly important for anyone with Alpha-1. This is because if you have Alpha-1 and are a smoker, you will develop severe early onset lung disease in the form of COPD or emphysema. 
Find out more at:

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MRCG-HRB Alpha One Foundation Research Funding Call

The Alpha One Foundation is pleased to announce participation in the MRCG-HRB Joint Funding Scheme 2017, a collaboration between the Health Research Board (HRB) and the Medical Research Charities Group (MRCG). 

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