Local Publications

The following publications used ISAAC data from the Thessaloniki centre:

  • Papadopoulou A, Hatziagorou E, Matziou VN , Grigoropoulou DD, Panagiotakos DB, Tsanakas JN, Gratziou C, Priftis KN. Comparison in asthma and allergy prevalence in the two major cities in Greece: the ISAAC phase II survey. Allergol Immunopathol(Madr).2011;39:347-55.

Thessaloniki Centre

Phase OnePhase TwoPhase Three View Centre Details
Centre:Thessaloniki, Greece ( Western Europe )
Principal Investigator:Associate Professor John Tsanakas
Age Groups:10-11, Timeframe: September 2001 to November 2001.
Sampling Frame:A sample of 40 schools selected in random order from the city centre and suburbs.
Phase OnePhase TwoView Centre DetailsPhase Three
Centre:Thessaloniki, Greece ( Western Europe )
Principal Investigator:Associate Professor John Tsanakas
Age Groups:6-7Timeframe:November 2000 to February 2001
Sampling Frame:13-14yr: Some schools in Thessaloniki


Associate Professor John Tsanakas

Paediatric Respiratory Unit
3rd Department of Paediatrics
Hippokration General Hospital
49 Kostantinoupoleos Street


  • Phase Two Principal Investigator for Thessaloniki
  • Phase Three Principal Investigator for Thessaloniki

There were several epidemiological studies about paediatric asthma in Greece since 1978; they had different methodology regarding questionnaires and the age of the samples. In the different asthma prevalence studies that had been done between 1970 and 1990, even taking into account that they had different methodology, we could see that there was a concerning increase in asthma prevalence. For this reason we considered it very important to join ISAAC.

Dr Christine Gratziou, our National Co-ordinator in ISAAC study, was the liaison person who organized participation of Greece in ISAAC phase One study in 1994. In phase One Greece participated in ISAAC study with one centre, collecting date from two big cities: Athens and Thessaloniki. At that time I was in charge of the Paediatric Pulmonology Unit of Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.Dr Gratziou suggested me to participate in the next phases of ISAAC (II and III). So I undertook the role of Principal Investigator in Thessaloniki Center for phase Two and Three. In Phase Two and Three a second centre was added 1510 children from 36 schools participated in the 6-7 years group and. It was very important to have a second centre within an area far from the capital, to have a better idea of the prevalence of asthma and allergies in Greece.

Since Greece has participated in ISAAC, we think that there has been a growing concern about asthma in the physician community. Paediatricians now recognize asthma symptoms more easily and treat asthma more effectively. Besides, participating in ISAAC has given us the opportunity to compare our data with the data of other countries involved in this study, as well as to estimate the change of asthma prevalence in Greece over time.

We would like to thank all parents, children and school staff who participated in the surveys and also our fieldworkers team for their enthusiasm and effort throughout each study.