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About Cancer Research @UCC

The primary academic site of Cancer Research @UCC is situated on the 4th floor of the Western Gateway Building (WGB), University College Cork. This unit interfaces with cancer researchers across UCC and (inter) nationally, and with UCC affiliated regional hospitals and cancer clinical trials units.  It is the academic home of the HRB-supported UCC Cancer Trials Group and the UCC arm of the Blood Cancer Network of Ireland (BCNI). 

Cancer Research @UCC was originally founded in 1999 by the late Professor Gerald O’Sullivan; it was formerly known as the Cork Cancer Research Centre. The Centre was renamed Cancer Research @UCC in 2018. Professor Roisin Connolly was appointed as the Professor Gerald O’Sullivan Chair in Cancer Research and Director of Cancer Research @UCC in 2019.

Biomedical research in the centre is currently focusing on the areas of cancer biology (autophagy & cell death), the microbiome, synthetic biology, precision oncology clinical trials and cancer outcomes research.

Our goal at Cancer Research @UCC is to improve cancer outcomes through innovative research programmes spanning the bench to the bedside.

Professor Roisin Connolly, Director of Cancer Research @UCC

Welcome from the Director Welcome from the Director


Professor Gerald O'Sullivan founded the Cork Cancer Research Centre (now Cancer Research @UCC) in August 1999 and remained as Director until he passed away in February 2012. He was an outstanding surgeon and was honoured throughout his career, a highlight of which was an Honorary of the American College of Surgeons, an award limited to 100 living surgeons worldwide at any one time.  

Qualified in 1969, Professor O’Sullivan spent over 35 years working as an oesophageal cancer specialist and was a firm believer of the Alan Key quote, ‘the best way to change the future is to invent it’. It was this belief that led him to create a centre of cancer research excellence in Cork with the aim of discovering new treatments for cancers with a poor prognosis.   

To preserve and honour his memory as a pioneer of ground-breaking cancer research, the Professor Gerald O’ Sullivan Chair of Cancer Research was created in his name - a prestigious position held by Professor Roisin Connolly since October 2019. A plaque in gratitude for the support provided for this position from Breakthrough Cancer Research was unveiled in the Western Gateway Building in October 2021.

Many of our Researchers and Faculty have contributed extensively to the development of Cancer Research @UCC from its origins as the Cork Cancer Research Centre. As Cancer Research @UCC moves forward with new leadership, we would like to acknowledge this dedication and look forward to many more years of collaboration.

Researchers and Faculty of Cancer Research @UCC pay tribute to Prof. Gerry O'Sullivan.

Articles written about Gerry O'Sullivan after his passing can be found at these links: 

Cancer Research @UCC

4th floor, Western Gateway Building , Western Road, Cork