The UK's first Centre of Excellence for Public Health Research will be launched at Queen's University Belfast today, with a focus on nutrition and lifestyle.
With a research portfolio that spans molecules to populations, the 5m centre is part of a 20 million investment programme under the umbrella of the UK Clinical Research Collaboration (UKCRC).
Its work is aimed to lead to significant improvements in the wellbeing and health of the UK population.
It will focus on an integrated approach to health and social services and will research the economic, social and biological factors which cause chronic diseases as well as looking at the main causes of inequalities in health experiences.
The Queen's-based Centre was awarded funding following a competitive process and is the first of five in the UK to be launched. Others will open in Cambridge, Cardiff, Newcastle and Nottingham.
Queen's University Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Gregson said: "Queen's is happy to work with partners including the Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust, the R&D Office and the Belfast Hospitals Trust.
"The launch of the Centre is an important new dimension in strengthening the extensive research base in medicine, health and life sciences at Queen's."
Professor Frank Kee of Queen's, the Director of the Centre of Excellence for Public Health (NI), said a theme of partnership would underpin everything that the Centre would do.
"The Centre will help Queen's and our partners to make a tangible difference to the wellbeing of the community. This will be central to our mission.
"It boosts our capacity to research the cause of health inequalities and increases our ability to ensure this research meets the needs of policy-makers, practitioners and the public we serve.
"I look forward to opportunities for improving public health, working with our Assembly, within and across our own institutions and with voluntar
|Contact: Andrea Clements|
Queen's University Belfast