Richard George Barbers, MD

Professor of Clinical Medicine

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Dr. Barbers’ clinical interests include asthma, lung transplantation, allergy and clinical immunology and cough. Dr. Barbers also performs bronchial thermoplasty in selected asthma patients as well as noninvasive endobrochial valves insertion in selected COPD patients. His research interests include role of innate and adaptive immune mechanisms in severe asthma and airway remodeling. He is also examining the role of autophagy (repair and regeneration of cells) in asthma.

Dr. Barbers earned his medical degree from Georgetown University. He then went on to complete two fellowships, one in Clinical Immunology and Allergy, and the other in Pulmonary Disease both at UCLA. After teaching and practicing medicine at UCLA and the University of Massachusetts, Dr. Barbers joined the Keck School of Medicine faculty in 1990. Dr. Barbers’ teaching subjects include lung transplantation and asthma and he has published and lectured extensively in these areas.


  • American Thoracic Society: Fellow, 2019
  • USC, Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine: Teacher of the Year, 2009


  • Iron controls the development of airway hyperreactivity by regulating ILC2 metabolism and effector function Sci Transl Med. 2024 May 08; 16(746):eadk4728. . View in PubMed
  • Blocking CD226 regulates type 2 innate lymphoid cell effector function and alleviates airway hyperreactivity J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2024 Jan 19. . View in PubMed
  • Effect of bronchial thermoplasty on static and dynamic lung compliance and resistance in patients with severe persistent asthma Respir Med. 2023 10; 217:107341. . View in PubMed
  • Safety and effectiveness of bronchial thermoplasty after 10 years in patients with persistent asthma (BT10+): a follow-up of three randomised controlled trials Lancet Respir Med. 2021 05; 9(5):457-466. . View in PubMed
  • Comparison of Skin Cancer Incidence in Caucasian and Non-Caucasian Liver VsLung Transplant Recipients: A Tale of Two Regimens. Clin Drug Investig. 2019 Feb; 39(2):197-203. . View in PubMed
  • Lack of association of Aspergillus colonization with the development of bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome in lung transplant recipients: An international cohort study J Heart Lung Transplant. 2019 09; 38(9):963-971. . View in PubMed
  • Clinical risk factors for invasive aspergillosis in lung transplant recipients: Results of an international cohort study J Heart Lung Transplant. 2018 10; 37(10):1226-1234. . View in PubMed
  • Further Studies of Unsuspected Emphysema in Nonsmoking Patients With Asthma With Persistent Expiratory Airflow Obstruction Chest. 2018 03; 153(3):618-629. . View in PubMed
  • Voriconazole and squamous cell carcinoma after lung transplantation: A multicenter study Am J Transplant. 2018 01; 18(1):113-124. . View in PubMed
  • Lack of autophagy induces steroid-resistant airway inflammationJ Allergy Clin Immunol. 2016 05; 137(5):1382-1389. e9. . View in PubMed
  • Bronchial thermoplasty: Long-term safety and effectiveness in patients with severe persistent asthma J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2013 Dec; 132(6):1295-302. . View in PubMed
  • Risk-adjusted relationship between voriconazole utilization and non-melanoma skin cancer among lung and heart/lung transplant patients Transpl Infect Dis. 2013 Aug; 15(4):329-43. . View in PubMed
  • Near fatal asthma: clinical and airway biopsy characteristics Pulm Med. 2012; 2012:829608. . View in PubMed
  • Outcomes after lung transplantation and practices of lung transplant programs in the United States regarding hepatitis C seropositive recipients Transplantation. 2011 Jun 15; 91(11):1293-6. . View in PubMed
  • Pericardial constriction after lung transplantation Ann Thorac Surg. 2010 Oct; 90(4):1361-3. . View in PubMed
  • Effectiveness and safety of bronchial thermoplasty in the treatment of severe asthma: a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, sham-controlled clinical trial Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2010 Jan 15; 181(2):116-24. . View in PubMed
  • Back to the futureAsthma. Curr Opin Pulm Med. 2008 Jan; 14(1):1-2. . View in PubMed
  • Long-term pulmonary function after living-donor lobar lung transplantation in adults Ann Thorac Surg. 2005 Feb; 79(2):418-25. . View in PubMed
  • A decade of living lobar lung transplantation: perioperative complications after 253 donor lobectomies Am J Transplant. 2004 Aug; 4(8):1283-8. . View in PubMed
  • A decade of living lobar lung transplantation: recipient outcomes J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2004 Jan; 127(1):114-22. . View in PubMed
  • Regulation of activin A expression in mast cells and asthma: its effect on the proliferation of human airway smooth muscle cells J Immunol. 2003 Apr 15; 170(8):4045-52. . View in PubMed
  • Living donor lung transplantation: selection, technique, and outcome Transplant Proc. 2001 Nov-Dec; 33(7-8):3527-32. . View in PubMed
  • Asthma in Y2K and beyond Curr Opin Pulm Med. 2000 Jan; 6(1):1-3. . View in PubMed
  • Novel bacterium isolated from a lung transplant patient with cystic fibrosis J Clin Microbiol. 1999 Dec; 37(12):3851-5. . View in PubMed
  • Lung transplantation for cystic fibrosis: an update and practical considerations for referring candidates Curr Opin Pulm Med. 1999 Nov; 5(6):365-70. . View in PubMed
  • Management of the severe asthmatic Curr Opin Pulm Med. 1999 Jan; 5(1):58-62. . View in PubMed
  • Recipient and donor outcomes in living related and unrelated lobar transplantation Transplant Proc. 1998 Aug; 30(5):2261-3. . View in PubMed
  • Cystic fibrosis: bilateral living lobar versus cadaveric lung transplantation Am J Med Sci. 1998 Mar; 315(3):155-60. . View in PubMed
  • The detection of recurrent sarcoidosis by FDG-PET in a lung transplant recipient West J Med. 1998 Feb; 168(2):130-2. . View in PubMed
  • Costs associated with asthma treatment Curr Opin Pulm Med. 1998 Jan; 4(1):1-3. . View in PubMed
  • Critical care management of the asthmatic patient Curr Opin Pulm Med. 1998 Jan; 4(1):4-8. . View in PubMed
  • Role of transplantation (lung, liver, and heart) in sarcoidosis Clin Chest Med. 1997 Dec; 18(4):865-74. . View in PubMed
  • Newer therapeutic interventions for pulmonary transplant rejection Curr Opin Pulm Med. 1997 Sep; 3(5):366-71. . View in PubMed
  • Living donor lobar lung transplants and HLA matching: a preliminary report Transplant Proc. 1997 Feb-Mar; 29(1-2):1418-9. . View in PubMed
  • Bilateral lobar transplantation utilizing living related donors Artif Organs. 1996 Oct; 20(10):1110-1. . View in PubMed
  • Advances in lung transplantation West J Med. 1996 May; 164(5):439-40. . View in PubMed
  • Whole-lung vs lobe transplantation for adults Arch Intern Med. 1996 Apr 22; 156(8):908. . View in PubMed
  • Lung transplantation in interstitial lung disease Curr Opin Pulm Med. 1995 Sep; 1(5):401-5. . View in PubMed
  • Living-related lobar transplantation: recipient outcome and early rejection patterns Transplant Proc. 1995 Jun; 27(3):1995-6. . View in PubMed
  • The technique of percutaneous transthoracic needle aspiration biopsy J Crit Illn. 1994 Oct; 9(10):949-54. . View in PubMed
  • Lymphocytic subpopulation profiles in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and peripheral blood from tobacco and marijuana smokers Chest. 1994 Mar; 105(3):847-52. . View in PubMed
  • Enhanced alveolar monocytic phagocyte (macrophage) proliferation in tobacco and marijuana smokers Am Rev Respir Dis. 1991 May; 143(5 Pt 1):1092-5. . View in PubMed
  • Effects of habitual use of marijuana and/or cocaine on the lung NIDA Res Monogr. 1990; 99:63-87. . View in PubMed
  • Asbestosis occurring after brief inhalational exposure: usefulness of bronchoalveolar lavage in diagnosis Br J Ind Med. 1989 Feb; 46(2):106-10. . View in PubMed
  • Antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity mediated by lung macrophages: a comparison of two target cells Respiration. 1989; 55(2):94-104. . View in PubMed
  • Bronchoalveolar lavage cell and lymphocyte phenotype profiles in healthy asbestos-exposed shipyard workers Am Rev Respir Dis. 1989 Jan; 139(1):33-8. . View in PubMed
  • Peripheral blood lymphocyte subpopulations and mitogen responsiveness in tobacco and marijuana smokers J Psychoactive Drugs. 1988 Jan-Mar; 20(1):9-14. . View in PubMed
  • Chemotaxis of peripheral blood and lung leukocytes obtained from tobacco and marijuana smokers J Psychoactive Drugs. 1988 Jan-Mar; 20(1):15-20. . View in PubMed
  • Regulation of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 production by cultured alveolar macrophages from normal human donors and from patients with pulmonary sarcoidosis J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1987 Dec; 65(6):1201-9. . View in PubMed
  • Tracheobronchial changes in habitual, heavy smokers of marijuana with and without tobacco Am Rev Respir Dis. 1987 Jul; 136(1):142-9. . View in PubMed
  • Differential examination of bronchoalveolar lavage cells in tobacco cigarette and marijuana smokers Am Rev Respir Dis. 1987 Jun; 135(6):1271-5. . View in PubMed
  • Effects of in vitro asbestos exposure on natural killer and antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity Environ Res. 1987 Jun; 43(1):217-26. . View in PubMed
  • Bedside bronchoalveolar lavage for the diagnosis of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia in patients with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome AIDS Res. 1986 Feb; 2(1):31-41. . View in PubMed
  • Cellular and T-lymphocyte subpopulation profiles in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid from patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome and pneumonitis Am Rev Respir Dis. 1984 Nov; 130(5):786-90. . View in PubMed
  • In vitro depression of human lymphocyte mitogen response (phytohaemagglutinin) by asbestos fibres Clin Exp Immunol. 1982 Jun; 48(3):602-10. . View in PubMed