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Wellcome funding into Ireland - New research will investigate diet and kidney disease

26 January 2017

Dr Andrew Smyth, NUI Galway has secured a prestigious Wellcome Post-Doctoral Training Fellowship award through the SFI-HRB-Wellcome Partnership to carry out a clinical trial to determine the effect of dietary modification on kidney disease. The award is worth €486,492 and will be co-funded by SFI, HRB and Wellcome.

Dr Andrew Smyth, NUIG

Using the award Andrew will also form collaborations with international researchers in McMaster University in Canada and the University of Oxford in the UK to help reveal the risk factors for, and impact of, kidney disease. They will also look at the effect of kidney disease on other aspects of health.

Speaking about the achievement Dr Graham Love, Chief Executive at the Health Research Board said,

‘Securing this award is a real testament to Andrew’s research capability. These awards are not easy to get and we are delighted to work with SFI and Wellcome to help make them accessible to Irish researchers'. 

Head of Research Careers in Wellcome, Dr Anne-Maire Coriat, commented on the award saying,

‘We are delighted that Andrew was successful in his application for a Clinical Postdoctoral Research Training Fellowship, he is the first successful applicant from Ireland that Wellcome has supported since we launched the scheme for early postdoctoral fellowships in 2011. Research-active clinicians have an overwhelmingly positive impact on patient care but there are still many challenges facing clinicians who juggle clinical work and research. Our recent support for the Wellcome – Health Research Board Irish Clinical Academic Training (ICAT) Programme is a further example of our support for clinical academic research in Ireland – this award provides support for an all-Ireland cross-institutional, comprehensive national programme for Clinician Scientists based at six major Irish universities and their affiliated hospital groups'.

Recently, three more Irish researchers were successful in obtaining seed funding, worth over €350,000, from Wellcome through the same SFI-HRB-Wellcome Partnership. The Seed Awards are once-off awards of up to £100,000 (or euro equivalent) designed to help researchers develop a novel research idea, which could form part of a larger grant application in the future.

The three recent successful awardees are using their funding to understand the function of a novel molecule in killing breast cancer cells, to model the transport of drugs into diseased heart tissue and to generate models of motor neuron diseases using fruit flies.

You can read more in the press release at the link below.

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