Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

Dr Annie Curtis awarded Irish Research Council Laureate Award

28 March 2018

Dr Annie Curtis, StAR Research Lecturer in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Therapeutics (MCT) at RCSI, has been awarded a Laureate Award from the Irish Research Council to conduct ground-breaking research into the body clock and its control of inflammation.

Annie Curtis

Dr Curtis, who leads the Immune-Clock Lab at RCSI, is among 36 researchers who have received funding to pursue frontier research under the €29.6 million Laureate Awards, a new Irish Research Council funding programme. Announcing the awards, Minister Richard Bruton TD, Minister for Education and Skills said: “Frontier basic research is very much at the cutting edge of new knowledge. It is research that is daring, that pushes boundaries, and that moves beyond the frontiers of our current understanding.”

Speaking on this award for Dr Curtis, Professor Cathal Kelly, CEO/Registrar RCSI, said: “I am proud to congratulate Dr Annie Curtis on receiving a Laureate Award from the Irish Research Council. Her success is recognition of the ambitious, innovative translational research taking place in her lab, designed to develop and enhance new treatment options for chronic inflammatory diseases.”

Dr Curtis receives the Laureate Award for her research into understanding the precise mechanisms by which the body clock controls inflammation from a key immune cell called the macrophage. In particular, this research will focus on how the biological clock in macrophages controls production of the proinflammatory cytokine 1L1B. This understanding of the biological clock and inflammation will provide new options in the treatment of cardiovascular disease.

Funding for the project entitled 'Molecular Clock Control of the Pro-Inflammatory Cytokine IL-1b: A Mechanistic Link between Circadian Disruption and Cardiovascular Disease' will also support one Postdoctoral Research Fellow and one PhD student appointed for a period of four years.

RCSI is ranked among the top 250 (top 2%) of universities worldwide in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings (2018) and its research is ranked first in Ireland for citations. It is an international not-for-profit health sciences institution, with its headquarters in Dublin, focused on education and research to drive improvements in human health worldwide. RCSI is a signatory of the Athena SWAN Charter.

Find out more about the Irish Research Council here.