Research Themes

Theme Lead: Derek Morris

This theme explores how the application of genomics data science to genetic and phenotypic data from studies of illnesses and traits can provide insight into the biology of human disease. The genetic data generated from patients, their families and the general population includes genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and exome and whole genome sequencing studies.

Theme Lead: Adrian Bracken

The field of cancer genomics is a relatively new research area that takes advantage of Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) to study how the human genome is altered in cancer cells. By sequencing the DNA, and monitoring the RNA and epigenetic modifications of cancer cells in comparison with matched normal tissues, scientists identify differences that may initiate or drive cancers.

Theme Lead: David MacHugh

Given the changing environment, our expanding population, and increasing demands for nutrition, the need to optimize agriculture is of fundamental importance. The application of genomics technologies to the breeding and management of crops and livestock allows researchers to generate new opportunities for improving food production and developing sustainable practices to address these challenges.

Theme Lead: Stephen Gordon

Pathogen genomics has revolutionised our understanding of infectious disease. From a situation where the sequencing and annotation of a bacterial genome was a major technical feat costing € millions, we can now cheaply sequence hundreds of bacterial genomes in a matter of days. From being limited to sequencing pure cultures, we can now determine the genetic make-up of entire microbial populations. The challenge now is to maximise the use and usability of this data to the full.

Theme Lead: Orla O'Sullivan

Genomics is a branch of biotechnology which profiles the genes of an organism using DNA sequencing technologies and subsequently bioinformatics to assemble and ascertain the function and structure of entire genomes. 

Theme Lead: Gianpiero Cavalleri, Russell McLaughlin

Population genetics is the study of genetic variation within and between populations and how this variation changes over time. With the advent of modern genomic technologies, our knowledge of genetic variation within the human population has exploded.

Theme Lead: Pilib Ó Broin

This theme encompasses the hardware, software, statistical, and computational methods that underpin modern genomics data science research. Storing, analysing, and visualising the large data sets generated by high-throughput genomics assays often requires dedicated local or cloud-based high-performance computing (HPC) infrastructure or specialised hardware such as GPUs and FPGAs, along with algorithms and pipelines that have been specifically developed to make efficient use of these resources.