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Press Release

Press release

HRB to invest €12 million in research projects for better health

22 August 2013

Are current increases in suicide rates linked to the recession? Does our blood group determine our risk of heart attack? How do we improve outcomes for young adults with diabetes?

These questions, and many more, will be examined through a €12.3 million investment by the Health Research Board (HRB).

'This funding will address a wide range of subjects, including mental health, cancer, diabetes and arthritis', says Enda Connolly, Chief Executive at the HRB. 'It will support health professionals and researchers to examine pressing research questions that will deliver strong evidence to enhance patient care, improve people's health or lifestyle and positively influence how we deliver our health services'.

A total of 40 projects were selected from 209 applications. These were assessed by international peer review panels who believed the nature, scope and relevance of the proposals demonstrated great ambition and innovation that would lead to results that are relevant both nationally and internationally. Each project will receive up to €330,000 over the next three years.

'I believe we will see an excellent return on this investment. No one is better placed to understand the needs of patients, or identify how we can improve their care, than people involved at the coal face in hospitals and across the health services. We are supporting experts who have clearly demonstrated they are dedicated to turning good ideas into research discoveries that can transform policy and practice', concludes Connolly.

Selected summaries
  • Professor Ella Arensman of the National Suicide Research Foundation and collaborators at University College Cork will examine whether there is a link between suicide rates and the recession.
  • Dr Sean Dineen, National University Ireland, Galway, is investigating an intervention that will improve outcomes for young adults living with Type 1 Diabetes.
  • Professor Dermot Kenny in the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland is investigating the role of blood groups as a risk for heart attack.
  • Professor Anne McFarlane at University of Limerick will examine how to reconfigure the Irish Primary Care service for maximum benefit to patients and their families in the community.
  • Dr Patricia Fitzpatrick, University College Dublin, is evaluating the clinical and economic benefits of introducing the new-born screening programme for cystic Fibrosis.
  • Professor Stewart Walsh, University of Limerick, will conduct trials to help prevent adverse events in major vascular surgery.
  • Dr Lucy Norris, Trinity College Dublin, is developing a risk score model she believes will help accurately identify whether gynaecological cancer patients at high risk of blood clotting in the veins or lungs.
  • Dr Thomas Ritter, National University Galway will develop a new topical treatment for skin inflammation using adult stems cells.

Abstracts of all 40 successful projects are available on request.


For more information contact:

Gillian Markey
Communications Manager
Health Research Board
An Bord Taighde Sláinte
73 Lower Baggot Street
Dublin 2

t +353 1 2345103
f +353 1 6612335
m +353 87 2288514

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