Galway Diabetes Research Centre
The Galway Diabetes Research Centre (GDRC) is a joint venture between NUI Galway and Galway and Roscommon University Hospital Group, which will bring together an interdisciplinary research consortium of active researchers and clinicians who have a track record in the field of diabetes. The GDRC, based at NUI Galway, will link researchers from a diverse range of disciplines across all the Colleges together with strengthening and developing close links with clinicians from University College Hospital Galway and the hospitals linked to the NUI Galway regional Medical Academies.
Diabetes is a chronic condition associated with significant morbidity and mortality. It is the commonest metabolic illness globally with 346 million people worldwide having the condition (WHO 2010). It is estimated that this figure will increase to 550million by 2030. About 90% of all diabetes is type 2. The prevalence of type 2 diabetes is increasing at an alarming rate in tandem with rising obesity rates.
In Ireland the number of people with type 2 diabetes is growing as a result of an ageing population and rising obesity rates. The Diabetes Federation of Ireland estimated that 200,000 people had diabetes in Ireland in 2003 and a further 200,000 had the condition but were unaware of it. They also estimated that a further 250,000 had pre-diabetes and 50% would develop diabetes in the ensuing 5 years if lifestyle changes were not met. The Institute of Public Health (2005) concluded that 4.7% of the population (circa 150,000) of the Republic had established diabetes, with the highest prevalence in the Western Region (5.2%). The Institute of Public Health have revised their figures again (2012) and now conclude that 9.6% of the population have Diabetes.
Through three main clusters: Aetiology and Prevention, Clinical Management, and Population/Health Services Research, the GDRC will serve the needs of patients with diabetes mellitus and those at risk of developing diabetes mellitus by creating the treatments of the future through research, providing state of the art clinical care and developing the carers of the future through education.