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

RCSI awarded funding for health research on superbugs and ovarian cancer

08 June 2011

Professor Hilary Humphreys, Department of Clinical Microbiology, RCSI and Beaumont Hospital and Dr Bryan Hennessy, Senior Lecturer, RCSI and Consultant Medical Oncologist, Beaumont Hospital, were among those who were awarded  funding this month under the ‘Translational Research Award’ programme supported through the Health Research Board (HRB) and Science Foundation Ireland (SFI).

Hilary Humphreys and Group
Pictured (l-r) are Mr Seán Sherlock T.D., Minister for Research and Innovation, Professor Hilary Humphreys, Dr Stephen Daniels, and Dr James Reilly T.D., Minster for Health.

The projects which will aid patient well-being were awarded to four exceptional research groups announced in RCSI by Dr James Reilly T.D., Minster for Health, and Mr Seán Sherlock T.D., Minister for Research and Innovation on Wednesday, June 8th 2011.

The HRB and SFI will co-fund four as part of a joint investment of €3million. The groups have been selected due the potential of the research for producing health benefits and economic development in Ireland.

Professor Hilary Humphreys will collaborate with Dr Stephen Daniels, Dublin City University on a project entitled ‘improved methods to detect and decontaminate environmental sources of healthcare-associated infection’ which will explore potential for a new commercial device that can kill hospital superbugs.

Bryan Hennessey and group
Pictured (l-r) are Mr Seán Sherlock T.D., Minister for Research and Innovation, Dr Bryan Hennessy, and Dr James Reilly T.D., Minster for Health.

Dr Bryan Hennessy will work in collaboration with Dr Liam Grogan, Consultant Medical Oncologist, Beaumont Hospital on a project which will develop novel diagnostic tool for predicting responsiveness of ovarian cancer patients to a new class of therapeutics.

Speaking at the announcement of the Translational Research Awards, Minister Reilly said: "The Translational Research Award initiative focuses on areas most likely to generate results and benefits for health and long-term economic development. Research leading to informed action is crucial. Knowledge derived from research is paramount in providing the evidence-base for better health policies and systems; systems that underpin effective and efficient health service provision. In addition, it strives to encourage and reward more efficient and effective collaboration between academics and healthcare professionals engaged in translational research. The funding announced today will help to speed up the translation of these promising research ideas into real world outcomes and benefits."

Also addressing the event, Minister Sherlock said: "A core objective of the Translational Research Award programme is to increase support for internationally-competitive research in Ireland. The focus is on bringing scientific researchers and clinicians closer together to deliver health benefits to patients. This can be achieved by converting basic research findings into innovative strategies, products or services that assist in the diagnosis, treatment or prevention of human diseases and infections such as superbugs, heart attacks and cancer. Furthermore, some of these research projects involve active collaborations with multinational healthcare and pharmaceutical companies engaged in the development of novel diagnostics and drugs. We must continue to work together to ensure that the discoveries made in Irish labs are translated into health and economic benefits."