TCD Researcher Awarded HRB Funding for Special Research

Posted on: 03 June 2005

TCD researcher, Dr Joe Keane received one of the first awards of the Health Research Board’s (HRB) new research grants to support medical consultants to focus on world-class research in areas that will have direct benefits for patient care. The ‘Clinician Scientists Awards’, the first of their kind in Ireland and totalling nearly €3 million, were announced on Monday 30 May 2005 by the Tánaiste and Minister for Health and Children, Mary Harney TD. The research funded will address real health issues in Ireland. Dr Keane, a consultant in respiratory medicine in the Department of Clinical Medicine at St. James’s Hospital Dublin and Principal Investigator at the Institute of Molecular Medicine and Dublin Molecular Medicine Centre, TCD, will focus on new ways to prevent and treat tuberculosis, a chronic lung disease, which claims the lives of two million people worldwide every year, the incidence of which has increased in Dublin over the past two years. The award recipient, Dr Mary Cannon, a senior lecturer in psychiatry at the Royal College of Surgeons Dublin and consultant in Beaumont Hospital, will investigate the onset of schizophrenia in young adults. ‘Today’s health research is tomorrow’s health service’, said Professor Desmond Fitzgerald, Chairman of the HRB. ‘These awards are a critical step to bridge the gap between research and patient care, develop a world-class health service and increase Ireland’s contribution to international efforts to prevent disease’. Both successful medical consultants passed a rigorous, international peer review process and survived stiff competition from the 11 other applicants with excellent track records in research to be the first Irish recipients of a clinician scientist award. They have first hand experience of patient care and the most recent information about emerging trends in their specialised field.