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Centre for Colorectal Disease

The Centre for Colorectal Disease in St. Vincent’s University Hospital was established in 1983. The Centre aims to achieve a more complete understanding of the causes of colorectal cancer, inflammatory bowel disease and pelvic floor disorders through translational and clinical research.

More information about the clinical services provided by the Centre for Colorectal Disease can be found at

The Centre for Colorectal Disease is affiliated with the UCD School of Medicine

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

Our research goals in IBD:

  • Identification of molecular signalling pathways that are dysregulated in immune cells of patients with IBD
  • Investigation of how environmental factors in the gut, e.g. low levels of tissue oxygen or colonisation by different microbial species impact on these responses
  • To understand from the patient’s perspective how IBD impacts on their quality of life

Examples of recent research on these themes can be found at:

The Centre for Colorectal Disease has recently established an Investigator Network for IBD Therapy in Ireland (INITIative). The network is open to clinical and scientific investigators with an interest in Crohn’s Disease and ulcerative colitis throughout the island of Ireland. More information can be found at

Colorectal Cancer

Our key research goals in colorectal cancer:

  • Understand how the local tissue environment of the gut impacts on the immune response to cancer
  • Development and translation to the clinic of new methods for the molecular and pathological classification of colorectal cancer

Recent Research on these themes can be found here:

Research team 

  • Elizabeth Ryan, Senior Scientist, Contact:
  • Miriam Tosetto, Senior Research Assistant
  • Louise Elliott, Merck Serono Newman Fellow in Translational Oncology
  • Kasia Oficjalska, HRB Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Francesco Caiazza, SFI Industry Fellow with Alaunus BioSciences
  • Karen Hartery, Boston Scientific Newman Fellow in Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Zaid Heetun, AbbVie Newman Fellow in Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Catherine Rowan, Dansac Laker Newman Fellow

Members of the Centre for Colorectal Disease

Maire Buckley, Garret Cullen, Glen Doherty, David Fennelly, David Gibbons, Ann Hanly, John Hyland, Rory Kennelly, Sean Martin, Hugh Mulcahy, Ray McDermott, Gerard McVey, Ronan O’Connell, Diarmuid O’Donoghue, Kieran Sheahan, Stephen Skehan, Niall Swan, Des Winter.

Funding Sources

Many national and international pharmaceutical companies generously support our research by sponsoring a research fellow through the UCD Newman Fellowship programme. Details are available on

We are also generously supported by grants from the Health Research Board.