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O’TOOLE, Paul Professor

Professor of Microbiology at University College, Cork


Following industry and academic positions in Sweden, Canada, New Zealand and the US, Paul O’Toole is Professor of Microbial Genomics at University College Cork, Ireland. His main research theme is the genomics of gastrointestinal bacteria in humans with emphasis on commensal species. He has co-ordinated and participated in several major projects that examine the composition and function of the gut microbiota, its reaction to habitual diet, and its relationship to health, functional gastrointestinal disorders, and ageing. The ultimate aim of these investigations is to understand host-microbiome interactions, especially in the context of multi-factorial disease. He co-ordinated the ELDERMET project (eldermet.ucc.ie), a nationally funded €5M project that established diet-microbiota health interactions in 500 elderly persons, and he leads a project called ELDERFOOD that is investigating novel foods for healthy aging. He is a Principal Investigator in the APC Microbiome Institute (apc.ucc.ie), in which he leads projects on microbiota as a modulator of disease risk in aging and colorectal cancer. He has participated in several EU projects on gut microbiota including NuAge (anchored by University of Bologna) and MyNewGut (anchored by CSIC Valencia). He is a co-founder of Tucana Health Ltd., now operating as 4D Pharma Cork Ltd., which is developing microbiome profiling as an adjunct to health management. Research in his lab is supported by Science Foundation Ireland, Dept. Agriculture Fisheries and Marine, the Health Research Board, and the EU.