Every researcher is working towards that big discovery - none more critical than a cure for cancer. Dr. Pat Kiely is Principal Investigator of the Laboratory of Cellular & Molecular Biology in the Department of Life Sciences and has research activities in the Materials and Surface Science Institute (MSSI) and Stokes Institute, UL. Dr. Kiely and his team of researchers are taking on the challenge of understanding how cancers spread. 1 in 3 people in Ireland will go on to develop cancer in their life. Dr. Kiely explains, “the problem with cancer is that there are so many different types, each with several different mutations and so we need to think about cancer as a collection of diseases”

Dr. Kiely’s research is predominantly focused with understanding how cancer cells migrate away from the primary tumour. Dr. Kiely believes that understanding the molecular mechanisms that regulate cell migration will reveal fresh approaches to target cancer as well as developmental and neurodegenerative diseases. He explains; “UL has had the foresight to lay the foundations that are facilitating applied and interdisciplinary research that allows us now to bring something new to our fight against cancer.” Dr. Kiely added: “In cancer research, we need to strive to get closer to patient-specific therapy and bring strong minds together to take on the battle against this disease.”

Dr. Kiely’s team are working with several national and international collaborators including research groups at the University of California San Francisco, Texas A&M University, the University of Glasgow and the Albert Einstein Institute of Medicine New York, as well as several researchers across UL in materials science and microfluidics.