null Benjamin Smith, MD, M.Sc., FRCPC

Scientist, RI-MUHC

Translational Research in Respiratory Diseases Program

Centre for Outcomes Research and Evaluation

Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, McGill University

Department of Medicine, Division of Respiratory Medicine, MUHC



obstructive lung diseases • imaging • cardiopulmonary physiology

Research Focus

My research focuses on investigating the pathophysiological mechanisms of obstructive lung diseases in order to improve clinically meaningful outcomes. Obstructive lung disease (e.g., chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma) represents a leading cause of morbidity and mortality globally, and in Canada. My research integrates methods of population-based epidemiology, state-of-the-art-imaging, and physiology in order to understand disease pathogenesis and expose targetable mechanisms of functional impairment. My specific areas of interest include airway structure and developmental susceptibility to obstructive lung disease; the personalization of obstructive lung disease prevention and treatment based on airway anatomy; and the cardiotoxic effects of breathing mechanics in obstructive lung disease. My clinical and academic interests include improving the quality of lung cancer diagnosis and staging, and medical education.

Selected Publications

Click on Pubmed to see my current publications list

  • Smith BM, Kirby M, Hoffman EA, et al. Association of Dysanapsis With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Among Older Adults. JAMA. 2020;323(22):2268–2280. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.6918. PMID: 32515814.

  • Vameghestahbanati M, Kirby M, Tanabe N, Vasilescu DM, Janssens W, Everaerts S, Vanaudenaerde BM, Benedetti A, Hogg JC, Smith BM. Central Airway Tree Dysanapsis Extends to the Peripheral Airways. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2020 Nov 2. doi: 10.1164/rccm.202007-3025LE. PMID: 33137261.

  • Smith BM, Traboulsi H, Austin JHM, Manichaikul A, Hoffman EA, Bleecker ER, Cardoso WV, Cooper C, Couper DJ, Dashnaw SM, Guo J, Han MK, Hansel NN, Hughes EW, Jacobs DR Jr, Kanner RE, Kaufman JD, Kleerup E, Lin CL, Liu K, Lo Cascio CM, Martinez FJ, Nguyen JN, Prince MR, Rennard S, Rich SS, Simon L, Sun Y, Watson KE, Woodruff PG, Baglole CJ, Barr RG; MESA Lung and SPIROMICS investigators. Human airway branch variation and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2018 Jan 30;115(5):E974-E981. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1715564115. Epub 2018 Jan 16. PMID: 29339516.

  • Donovan AA, Johnston G, Moore M, Jensen D, Benedetti A, Coxson HO, Gottfried S, Petrof BJ, Boureabu J, Smith BM. Diaphragm Morphology Assessed by Computed Tomography in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Ann Am Thorac Soc 2020 Dec 15 doi: 10.1513/AnnalsATS.202007-865OC. PMID: 33321048.

  • Smith BM, Hoffman EA, Rabinowitz D, Bleecker E, Christenson S, Couper D, Donohue KM, Han MK, Hansel NN, Kanner RE, Kleerup E, Rennard S, Barr RG. Comparison of spatially matched airways reveals thinner airway walls in COPD. The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) COPD Study and the Subpopulations and Intermediate Outcomes in COPD Study (SPIROMICS). Thorax. 2014 Nov;69(11):987-96. doi: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2014-205160. Epub 2014 Jun 13. PMID: 24928812.