Dermot P. Kelleher

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Dermot Kelleher
Scientific career
Thesis T-cell immunoregulation in Crohn's disease (1995)

Dermot P. Kelleher FMedSci is Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.[1]

He moved to UBC in August 2015. Previously Kelleher was Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at Imperial College London. He took up this role on 1 October 2012.[2] From 2006 until 2012 he was Head of the School of Medicine and Vice-Provost for Medical Affairs at Trinity College, Dublin.[3] He was one of the three founders of Opsona Therapeutics in 2004; Opsona's research is primarily focused on the role of toll-like receptors (TLRs) and TLR signalling in human innate immunity.

Research and career[edit]

Kelleher's major interest is in the biology of the gastrointestinal immune system and in the interaction between this system and epithelial biology.[4] Hence the research has direct implications for the study of inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract including coeliac disease and Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection. The research projects within the group focus on the normal functioning of the T-lymphocyte and its role in intestinal inflammation. Gastrointestinal inflammation is under immunogenetic control and the genetics of coeliac disease are also a focus of the group.[5][6][7] Specific research topics include:

  • Signalling role of adhesion molecules on both peripheral and intestinal lymphocytes.
  • Interactions between H. pylori and the gastrointestinal epithelium.
  • Vaccine development for H. pylori infection. Immunogenetics of gastrointestinal and liver disease.

In 2004, he co-founded Opsona Therapeutics with Kingston Mills and Luke A. J. O'Neill.


  • Characterisation of biochemical mechanisms involved in integrin-mediated lymphocyte migration, a potential target for new therapeutic strategies.
  • Identification of mechanisms whereby H. pylori protects itself from antibody attacks.
  • Development and patenting of H. pylori vaccine, which has been licensed to Chiron Corporation.
  • Characterisation of immunogenetics of Hepatitis C viral clearance.

Professional attachments[edit]


  1. ^ Fayerman, Pamela (March 3, 2015). "Irish doctor is new UBC dean of medicine". Vancouver Sun. 
  2. ^ "Professor Dermot Kelleher named as Principal of the Faculty of Medicine". Retrieved 2 May 2015. 
  3. ^ "Appointments General Times Higher Education". Retrieved 2 May 2015. 
  4. ^ Farrell, Richard J.; Murphy, Ann; Long, Aideen; Donnelly, Suzanne; Cherikuri, Anil; O'Toole, Dermot; Mahmud, Nasir; Keeling, Paul W.N.; Weir, Donald G.; Kelleher, Dermot (2000). "High multidrug resistance (P-glycoprotein 170) expression in inflammatory bowel disease patients who fail medical therapy". Gastroenterology. 118 (2): 279–288. doi:10.1016/S0016-5085(00)70210-1. 
  5. ^ van Heel, David A; Franke, Lude; Hunt, Karen A; Gwilliam, Rhian; Zhernakova, Alexandra; Inouye, Mike; Wapenaar, Martin C; Barnardo, Martin C N M; Bethel, Graeme; Holmes, Geoffrey K T; Feighery, Con; Jewell, Derek; Kelleher, Dermot; Kumar, Parveen; Travis, Simon; Walters, Julian RF; Sanders, David S; Howdle, Peter; Swift, Jill; Playford, Raymond J; McLaren, William M; Mearin, M Luisa; Mulder, Chris J; McManus, Ross; McGinnis, Ralph; Cardon, Lon R; Deloukas, Panos; Wijmenga, Cisca (2007). "A genome-wide association study for celiac disease identifies risk variants in the region harboring IL2 and IL21". Nature Genetics. 39 (7): 827–829. PMC 2274985Freely accessible. PMID 17558408. doi:10.1038/ng2058. 
  6. ^ Hunt, Karen A; Zhernakova, Alexandra; Turner, Graham; Heap, Graham A R; Franke, Lude; Bruinenberg, Marcel; Romanos, Jihane; Dinesen, Lotte C; Ryan, Anthony W; Panesar, Davinder; Gwilliam, Rhian; Takeuchi, Fumihiko; McLaren, William M; Holmes, Geoffrey K T; Howdle, Peter D; Walters, Julian R F; Sanders, David S; Playford, Raymond J; Trynka, Gosia; Mulder, Chris J J; Mearin, M Luisa; Verbeek, Wieke H M; Trimble, Valerie; Stevens, Fiona M; O'Morain, Colm; Kennedy, Nicholas P; Kelleher, Dermot; Pennington, Daniel J; Strachan, David P; McArdle, Wendy L; Mein, Charles A; Wapenaar, Martin C; Deloukas, Panos; McGinnis, Ralph; McManus, Ross; Wijmenga, Cisca; van Heel, David A (2008). "Newly identified genetic risk variants for celiac disease related to the immune response". Nature Genetics. 40 (4): 395–402. PMC 2673512Freely accessible. PMID 18311140. doi:10.1038/ng.102. 
  7. ^ Dubois, Patrick C A; Trynka, Gosia; Franke, Lude; Hunt, Karen A; Romanos, Jihane; Curtotti, Alessandra; Zhernakova, Alexandra; Heap, Graham A R; Ádány, Róza; Aromaa, Arpo; Bardella, Maria Teresa; van den Berg, Leonard H; Bockett, Nicholas A; de la Concha, Emilio G; Dema, Bárbara; Fehrmann, Rudolf S N; Fernández-Arquero, Miguel; Fiatal, Szilvia; Grandone, Elvira; Green, Peter M; Groen, Harry J M; Gwilliam, Rhian; Houwen, Roderick H J; Hunt, Sarah E; Kaukinen, Katri; Kelleher, Dermot; Korponay-Szabo, Ilma; Kurppa, Kalle; MacMathuna, Padraic; Mäki, Markku; Mazzilli, Maria Cristina; McCann, Owen T; Mearin, M Luisa; Mein, Charles A; Mirza, Muddassar M; Mistry, Vanisha; Mora, Barbara; Morley, Katherine I; Mulder, Chris J; Murray, Joseph A; Núñez, Concepción; Oosterom, Elvira; Ophoff, Roel A; Polanco, Isabel; Peltonen, Leena; Platteel, Mathieu; Rybak, Anna; Salomaa, Veikko; Schweizer, Joachim J; Sperandeo, Maria Pia; Tack, Greetje J; Turner, Graham; Veldink, Jan H; Verbeek, Wieke H M; Weersma, Rinse K; Wolters, Victorien M; Urcelay, Elena; Cukrowska, Bozena; Greco, Luigi; Neuhausen, Susan L; McManus, Ross; Barisani, Donatella; Deloukas, Panos; Barrett, Jeffrey C; Saavalainen, Paivi; Wijmenga, Cisca; van Heel, David A (2010). "Multiple common variants for celiac disease influencing immune gene expression". Nature Genetics. 42 (4): 295–302. PMC 2847618Freely accessible. PMID 20190752. doi:10.1038/ng.543.