Launch of POI, November 2019

Prof Roisin Connolly, Dr Mark Tangney (PI), Orla Dolan, Dr Frances Drummond, Eoghan O’Sullivan

Precision Oncology Ireland (POI) is a consortium of five Irish Universities, six Irish Cancer Research Charities, including Breakthrough Cancer Research, and ten companies. POI aims to develop new diagnostics and therapeutics for the personalised treatment of cancer. Precision (or ‘personalised’) medicine uses data about a person’s genes (genomics), along with additional information on their cancer, to understand the unique pathways of a disease or treatment response in that person. With this new science, doctors can prescribe the right treatment in a timely fashion, saving the wasted resources and time our current ‘trial and error’ method incurs, while greatly improving response rates.

POI is a €11.9 million research collaboration in the field of precision oncology, which is supported by the Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Strategic Partnership Programme. The initiative is supported by a €5m Government investment through the SFI Strategic Partnership Programme, matched by a €6.9m investment from the Charity and Industry partners making up the Precision Oncology Ireland Consortium – the first time that researchers, charities and industry have combined forces in this way.

The full POI consortium is made up of 5 Irish Universities [University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, University College Cork and The National University of Ireland, Galway]; 6 Irish Charities [Breakthrough Cancer Research, Breast Cancer Ireland, Irish Cancer Society, National Breast Cancer Research Institute, National Children’s Research Centre, and The Oesophageal Cancer Fund]; and 10 Industry partners [Helsinn Birex, Bayer Healthcare, AstraZeneca, Oncomark Ltd., miR Scientific, Phion Therapeutics, Celgene Institute for Translational Research Europe, Cell Stress Discoveries Ltd., Fosun Orinove, and Genome Medicine Ireland]. The Consortium is part-funded by Science Foundation Ireland under their Strategic Partnership Programme.

At UCC, the team consists of Dr Sydney Walker (Postdoctoral scientist) and Ciaran Devoy (PhD Student).  Dr Yensi Flores joined the Tangney lab in 2021

Ciaran Devoy

Dr Yensi Flores

Dr Sydney Walker


Research Findings


Devoy C, Flores Bueso Y, Tangney M. Understanding and harnessing triple-negative breast cancer-related microbiota in oncology. Front Oncol. 2022 Nov 24;12:1020121. doi: 10.3389/fonc.2022.1020121. PMID: 36505861; PMCID: PMC9730816.

Hogan G, Eckenberger J, Narayanen N, Walker SP, Claesson MJ, Corrigan M, O’Hanlon D, Tangney M. Biopsy bacterial signature can predict patient tissue malignancy. Sci Rep 2021; 11: 18535.

Yallapragada VVB, Xu T, Walker SP, Tabirca S, Tangney M. Pepblock Builder VR – An Open-Source Tool for Gaming-Based Bio-Edutainment in Interactive Protein Design. Front Bioeng Biotechnol 2021; 9: 674211. PMC8160467

Yallapragada VVB, Walker SP, Devoy C, Buckley S, Flores Y, Tangney M. Function2Form Bridge-Toward synthetic protein holistic performance prediction. Proteins 2020; 88: 462-475.

Walker SP, Yallapragada VVB, Tangney M. Arming Yourself for The In Silico Protein Design Revolution. Trends Biotechnol 2020. DOI: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2020.10.003

Walker SP, Tangney M, Claesson MJ. Sequence-Based Characterization of Intratumoral Bacteria-A Guide to Best Practice. Front Oncol 2020; 10: 179. 7046755 doi: 10.3389/fonc.2020.00179

Flores Bueso Y, Walker SP, Hogan G, Claesson MJ, Tangney M. Protoblock – A biological standard for formalin fixed samples. Microbiome 2020; 8: 122. PMC7443293 DOI: 10.1186/s40168-020-00901-1

Flores Bueso Y, Walker SP, Tangney M. Characterization of FFPE-induced bacterial DNA damage and development of a repair method. Biol Methods Protoc 2020; 5: bpaa015. PMC7548031 DOI: 10.1093/biomethods/bpaa015

Yallapragada VVB, Gowda U, Wong D, O’Faolain L, Tangney M, Devarapu GCR. ODX: A Fitness Tracker-Based Device for Continuous Bacterial Growth Monitoring. Anal Chem 2019; 91: 12329-12335. DOI: 10.1021/acs.analchem.9b02628



View More