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I will support research programs in all aspects of CF and bronchiectasis care, this could include clinical trials, pulmonary exacerbation exploration, microbiology and basic science mechanisms.

19992021

Research activity per year

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Personal profile

Research Statement

My main clinical research interest is cystic fibrosis (CF). I work with a range of colleagues that includes, clinicians, allied health professionals, a clinical research team and basic scientists to create a translational research program in CF. My focus is to optimise clinical response to established and new therapies.  I lead an active investigator-initiated and pharmaceutical-sponsored research program to help realise this. This is supported by national and international collaborative research networks. My investigator led projects currently involve,

  • Multi-modal analysis of pulmonary exacerbations in CF, exploring the potential for clinical and inflammatory biomarkers to predict response to treatment
  • The investigation and clinical application of novel biomarkers in CF
  • The bacterial impact of non-antimicrobial therapies in CF and repurposing drugs
  • The impact of co-morbidities in CF by deep patient phenotyping and utilising pre-clinical models to assess the mechanisms involved
  • Exploration of Patient Reported Outcome Measures for clinical trials
  • Interplay of bacteria and fungi in CF

I also lead the CF pharmaceutical-sponsored clinical trial program in Belfast and link closely with the Northern Ireland Clinical Research Network (NICRN)-Respiratory Health and the Wellcome-Wolfson Clinical Research Facility. In this program I am a Principal Investigator (PI) and Chief Investigator (CI) on a number of pivotal clinical trials. This includes a phase I-III program exploring new therapies in CF and bronchiectasis. 

I also have additional investigator led programs in bronchiectasis and pneumonia. My  projects currently involve, pathogen identification in community acquired pneumonia and assessing outcome measures in bronchiectasis.

Research Leadership

I am Director of the European CF Society – Clinical Trial Network (CTN) (www.ecfs.eu/ctn). This Network consists of 58 CF research centres located in 17 European countries. I provide strategic direction of CF clinical trials and regularly lead reviews of pharmaceutical industry trial protocols prior to European adoption by the CTN. I also lead large European investigator led clinical trials. Belfast is recognised as one of the leading CF clinical trial centres in Europe.

Our clinical research centre is also a member of the UK CF Trust Clinical Trials Accelerator Platform (CTAP) and I currently serve as a member of the Research Scientific Oversight Board for the CF Trust.

I am a current member of the European CF Society Scientific Committee and a member of the UK CF Medical Association.

Clinical

I am a consultant respiratory physician specialising in CF and bronchiectasis. I am the current Director of the N. Ireland Regional Adult CF Centre.

I qualified in medicine from QUB and my early clinical training and airways inflammation research took place in Belfast.  I subsequently trained in respiratory medicine in Manchester and Brisbane. In 2006 I was appointed as a consultant in CF and Respiratory medicine in Bristol and a honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of Bristol. In 2008 I became the Centre Director of the Bristol Adult CF centre and Director of the Adult Cystic Fibrosis Regional (Severn) Network. I returned to Belfast in 2011.

I also lead a multidisciplinary bronchiectasis team and work with colleagues in the clinical immunology centre to provide a regional service for patients with structural lung disease, complex infections and immunodeficiency.  

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