APC Microbiome Ireland SFI Research Centre Boasts 9 Highly Cited Researchers According to 2019 Web of Science List

19 Nov 2019
APC boasts 9 highly cited researchers

The APC Microbiome Ireland SFI Research Centre is proud to announce that 9 investigators have been named Highly Cited Researchers, according to the Highly Cited Researchers 2019 list from the Web of Science Group, released today.  This list recognises researchers whose citation records position them in the very highest strata of research influence and impact and includes 23 Nobel laureates.  

The Cork researchers named, whose research is all in the area of food, microbiome and health, are based in University College Cork and Teagasc. Eight of the researchers were on the 2018 list and for four researchers it is their third time featuring on the list. Three of the researchers are in the cross-field category which identifies researchers with significant impact across several research fields over the last decade.

The researchers named are:

Dr Gerard Clarke, Lecturer in Psychiatry and Neurobehavioural Science, UCC and APC Microbiome Ireland.  His research focuses on stress and cognition in disorders such as depression and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), the impact of the gut microbiome on brain and behaviour across the life span and microbial regulation of tryptophan metabolism.

Prof Paul Cotter, Head of Department of Food Biosciences at Teagasc Food Research Centre and APC Microbiome Ireland.   His research focuses on the microbiology and microbiomes of food (especially fermented and other dairy foods), food processing and production environments and the gastrointestinal tract.  In the latter case, the focus is on maintaining/establishing a healthy gut microbiota through dietary interventions, including in athletes.  

Prof John Cryan, Head of Dept. of Anatomy & Neuroscience, UCC and APC Microbiome Ireland.  His research interests include the neurobiological basis of stress-related neuropsychiatric disorders including depression, anxiety and drug dependence. His group is also focused on understanding the interaction between brain, gut and the gut microbiome and how it applies to stress and immune-related disorders, including irritable bowel syndrome, obesity and neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder.

Prof Ted Dinan, Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry and Neurobehavioural Science, UCC and APC Microbiome Ireland. His main research interest is on the role of the gut microbiota in influencing brain function and development.  Within this context he has focused on depression and irritable bowel syndrome. He has made significant contributions to the literature on the regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis in situations of stress. 

Prof Ger Fitzgerald, Emeritus Professor of Food MicrobiologyUCC and APC Microbiome Ireland. His research interests span fundamental and applied aspects of the industrially important Lactic Acid Bacteria which are used in the production of fermented foods and probiotics.

Prof Colin Hill, Professor of Microbial Food Safety, School of Microbiology, UCC and APC Microbiome Ireland. His research interests lie in understanding the role of the microbiome in disease. He is particularly interested in studying individual microbes, bacteriophages (bacterial viruses) and bacteriocins to understand the forces shaping microbiome composition and to use that information to prevent and limit diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. 

Prof Paul O’Toole, Professor of Microbial Genomics, School of Microbiology, UCC and APC Microbiome Ireland. His research focuses on the genomics of gastrointestinal bacteria in humans with emphasis on commensal species and host interaction. He is particularly interested in the relationships between the composition and function of the gut microbiota, its interaction with habitual diet, and its relationship to health, functional gastrointestinal disorders, and ageing.

Prof Paul Ross, Prof of Microbiology, UCC and Director, APC Microbiome Ireland. His research in food and health includes the development of new antibiotics and anti-infectives, bacteriophage (viruses that infect only bacterial cells), human and animal pathogens, and how the gut microbiota influences health.

Prof Catherine Stanton, Senior Principal Research Officer, Teagasc, Dept. Psychiatry and Neurobehavioural Science, UCC and APC Microbiome Ireland. Her research includes nutritional aspects of dairy and functional foods, probiotic cultures, bioactive metabolite production, infant gut microbiota, and healthy proteins and fats (including conjugated linoleic acid, short chain fatty acids) that are produced by gut bacteria. She is also very interested in the microbiome during pregnancy and in infancy.

Dr Gerard Clarke, who appears on the list for the first time in 2019 said “I am honoured to be included in the 2019 Highly Cited Researchers list and to have my achievements recognised by my peers.  I’ve been fortunate to work with some really talented students, postdocs and collaborators on important topics and the most pleasing thing about this prestigious accolade is to see the value of our collective efforts acknowledged.”

Prof Paul Ross, Director, APC added “the continued success of so many APC researchers on the Highly Cited list is testimony to the achievements of these dedicated scientists.  It also endorses the sustained investment by Science Foundation Ireland in APC Microbiome Ireland since 2003 and shows that Irish scientists can compete with the best in the world.     

In total 29 researchers based in Ireland feature on the 2019 Highly Cited list. The full 2019 Highly Cited Researchers list and executive summary can be found here, and the methodology can be found  here.


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