The Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute (TBSI) consolidates and co-locates pre-clinical biomedical sciences research across five hitherto geographically dispersed schools. The over-arching strategic goal of TBSI is to create an environment to promote convergence, interdisciplinarity and thematic strength. The strategic impact of the research will be fundamental enhancement in the understanding of disease processes and application of this knowledge towards improved solutions of benefit to the wider populace, linking pre-clinical to translational research efforts through the domain of therapeutics and medical device technologies.
The development of TBSI integrates and scales interlinked proven quality research themes - Immunology, Cancer and Medical Devices, in the form of the three interlinked centres of research excellence: Centre for the Study of Immunology (CSI), Centre for Cancer Drug Discovery (C2D2) and the Centre for Medical Device Technology (CMDT), and co-locates them in a facility with provision of additional accommodation for industry to carry out related research. The development underpins and links to translational research at St James's Hospital including Trinity's Institute of Molecular Medicine and the Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility on that site.
New and improved undergraduate and postgraduate education and training courses will be developed which are directly aligned to the research expertise in the domains contained within TBSI. Medical education in TCD has been consolidated so that all pre-clinical medical teaching is based within the development - placing research to the fore in the TCD medical undergraduate experience.
Centre for Study of Immunology (CSI-Dublin)
CSI-Dublin facilitates integration of excellence in immunology, structural biology, medicinal chemistry, translational medicine and imaging, creating a new interdisciplinary research platform targeted at drug discovery for immune-mediated disease.
Convergence and collaboration around this major theme will furnish output of relevance to diseases of the first world (Arthritis, Asthma, Eczema, Stroke, Alzheimer's & Parkinson's Diseases (as neuroinflammatory processes) and of the developing world (TB, Malaria).
Building on the SFI funded SRC Immunology programme (see below), researchers in CSI-Dublin will focus on the frontier areas of innate immune receptors, the regulation of inflammation by T cell subsets, evasion of immunity by pathogens and the genetic basis of diseases including eczema, inflammatory bowel disease and schizophrenia. The fundamental discoveries being made by the PIs (eg in the areas of innate immune receptors and Th17/ Treg cells) will therefore be applied to diseases via collaboration in the Centre and will be validated by the generation of probes and structures by chemists and pharmacologists and the SGC. The unique nature of the Centre represents a new frontier in the effort to understand and manipulate the many diseases where immunity plays a central role. This key centrality of immunity in disease links CSI-Dublin and its investigators to both the Cancer and Medical Device themes of the new facility, and further on into the complementary and translational activities within the Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience and the Institute of Molecular Medicine in St James's Hospital.
The primary deliverable will be a self-sustaining, internationally recognized centre of excellence for the study of immunology. The ultimate aspiration is to form an Institute for Immunology within TBSI.
Immunology Research Centre (IRC)
The IRC is an SFI-funded Strategic Research Cluster involving 10 Immunology labs in Trinity (School of Biochemistry and Immunology, Department of Genetics and School of Clinical Medicine) and Maynooth, along with 2 industrial partners - Opsona Therapeutics and Merck Research Laboratories. Kingston Mills is the Director of the Centre, with Luke O'Neill and Seamus Martin (Genetics) as deputy directors and Sarah Higgins as Programme Manager. IRC includes almost 40 PIs, postdocs, PhD students and a Finance Manager. The IRC has been hugely successful - publishing over 40 papers and filing for a number of patents.
Centre for Cancer Drug Discovery (C2D2)
C2D2 brings together researchers from Chemistry, Biochemistry, Pharmacy and Medicine enabling a focus on TCD's established clinical strengths in haematological malignancies and specialisation in cancers such as those of the oesophagus, lung, prostate and pancreas.
Building on the SFI funded SRC in Cancer Therapeutics, the C2D2 will focus on mechanisms of apoptotic control within the specified range of cancers identified above.
TBSI facilitates a self-sustaining, internationally recognized centre of excellence for the study of cancer with the objective of filing novel chemical entities as investigational new drugs as quickly as possible.
Centre for Medical Device Technologies (CMDT)
The thematic objective of CMDT is the co-location and integration of complementary expertise aligned to medical device technology research & development with the ambition of realising Ireland as a world reference site in this domain.
The CMDT integrates research expertise in engineering (devices), pharmacy & pharmaceutical sciences (formulation & delivery), immunology (host response) and medicine (anatomy & physiology) to work towards delivery of next generation of implants and devices to improve quality of life across a spectrum of ailment and disease including bio-orthopaedics, neural-engineering, drug-eluting stents, implants and biomechanics. Uniquely in Ireland, the CMDT will integrate pharmacy and medicine with engineering, medicinal chemistry and biochemistry. https: //www.tcd.ie/bioengineering/research-innovation/innovation/medical.php
The programme of research builds on TCD's participation in the SFI-funded Drug Delivery SRC and will expand from the delivery of new prosthetic materials and understanding their interaction with the body (underpinned by the TCD strength in immunology), to the design of new implantable devices for drug delivery.
The objective is a self-sustaining, internationally recognized centre of excellence in medical device technologies which advances the rapid development of novel medical devices into human trials.