Leading Neuropharmacologist Presented with NovaUCD 2007 Innovation Award for Collaboration with Industry

The NovaUCD 2007 Innovation Award was today presented to UCD’s Professor Ciaran Regan in recognition of his successes in the establishment of key strategic and collaborative links with industry and in the commercialisation of neuroscience research.

Professor Ciaran Regan

Professor Regan’s achievements include securing €10 million in funding from Wyeth Discovery and Science Foundation Ireland to establish the Applied Neurotherapeutics Research Group at UCD. This Group, which aims to identify novel neurotherapeutic targets, has already generated 8 invention disclosures. This link was of critical importance in Wyeth’s later decision to establish a €13 million bio-therapeutic drug discovery research facility at UCD.

On presenting the NovaUCD 2007 Innovation Award to Professor Regan, UCD President Dr Hugh Brady said “Ciaran is one of those special individuals who combines excellence in teaching and in research with a commitment to commercialise the resulting research-generated intellectual property and in establishing key strategic links with industry.”

Professor Ciaran Regan with UCD President, Dr Hugh Brady

Professor Regan’s research is focussed on understanding mechanisms of brain plasticity and in exploiting these mechanisms as novel drug targets. He is a named inventor on 6 UCD patents and also co-founded a successful UCD spin-out company Berand Neuropharmacology in 2004. Berand, which is developing novel therapeutics for the treatment of autism and obesity, currently employs 4 people and is located in NovaUCD with research facilities in UCD’s Conway Institute.

Dr Pat Frain, Director, NovaUCD congratulating Professor Regan on winning this year’s NovaUCD Innovation Award said, “Ciaran has been extremely successful in the creation of an extensive intellectual property portfolio, forging commercialisation and other links with industry and in the establishment of Berand, an exciting new spin-off company.” He added, “He is an ideal role model for young UCD researchers seeking inspiration in the protection and commercialisation of research-generated intellectual property for the benefit of the economy and society.”


2 July 2007

For further information contact: Micéal Whelan, NovaUCD, tel: (01) 716 3712, e-mail: miceal.whelan@ucd.ie.

Editors Notes

NovaUCD is University College Dublin’s €11 million Innovation and Technology Transfer Centre. NovaUCD is responsible for the commercialisation of intellectual property arising from UCD research and for the development of co-operation with industry and business. NovaUCD as a purpose-built centre also nurtures new technology and knowledge-intensive enterprises. NovaUCD has over 40 incubation units, including bio-incubation units, and provides innovators and entrepreneurs with the necessary support and knowledge to take their ideas from proof of principle to commercial success. Twenty-two knowledge-intensive companies are currently located in NovaUCD. NovaUCD has been funded through a unique public-private partnership that includes AIB Bank, Arthur Cox, Deloitte, Enterprise Ireland, Ericsson, Goodbody Stockbrokers, UCD and Xilinx.

The NovaUCD Innovation Award was established in 2004 to highlight UCD’s commitment to innovation. The Award is presented annually to an individual in recognition of excellence in, contribution or commitment to innovation or in recognition of successes achieved in the commercialisation of UCD research. Previous award winners include Professor Conor Heneghan (2006), Professor Barry Smyth (2005) and Professor Mark Rogers (2004).

The Award has been designed by Colm Brennan, Sculptor of CAST Bronze Foundry. The award is a sculpture composed of a triangular form of polished Kilkenny limestone and a tapering spiral of bronze. The bronze spiral commences as a three-stepped path that resolves into a point as it ascends. The formal stone element represents existing knowledge while the dynamic spiral is a metaphor for research striving towards innovation.