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Posted: 04 July 2007

Leading neuropharmacologist receives NovaUCD 2007 Innovation Award for Collaboration with Industry

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 was presented with the NovaUCD 2007 Innovation Award.

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

“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,” said Dr Hugh Brady, President of UCD, who presented the award to Professor Regan.

Professor Regan’s research focuses on understanding mechanisms of brain plasticity and in exploiting these mechanisms as novel drug targets. A named inventor on 6 UCD patents, he 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 based in the UCD Conway Institute.

“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,” said Dr Pat Frain, Director, NovaUCD. “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.”

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).

Professor Ciaran Regan is Professor of Neuropharmacology at UCD School of Biomolecular & Biomedical Science, and Co-ordinator of the Applied Neurotherapeutics Research Group.

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Professor Ciaran regan with NovaUCD award