A new major foundation for sports surgery research was launched last week, which will involve the construction of training, research and testing centre, costing €15 million, over the next 18 months. The UPMC Sports Surgery Clinic Research Foundation, which grows out of the research work conducted by the Sports Injury Clinic in Santry, aims to make Ireland the global leader in sports medicine research and will draw on a range of international expertise in the field.
“This genuinely is the most exciting thing going on in sports medicine in the world anywhere,” Director of the Foundation, Dr Andy Franklyn-Miller told IMN.
Dr Franklyn-Miller said the idea for the Foundation came from the founder of the UPMC Sports Surgery Clinic, Mr Ray Moran, who was frustrated at the failure of existing sports medicine research to fund or coordinate research on a global scale.
“The aim of the foundation is to focus on areas where traditional grant funding is difficult to obtain and also to attract philanthropic funding, but also to bring together an international of experts to guide the research. The idea then was to bring together an advisory board who have a multitude of experience both in terms of large scale epidemiology research, but also with an understanding of biomechanics of injury and injury prevention.”
International experts in epidemiology, biomechanics, genetics, osteoarthritis, concussion and cellular medicine make up the inaugural board. The board will be chaired by Professor Paul McCrory of the Florey Institute for Neuroscience and Mental Health in Melbourne, Australia, a neurologist and sports physician with over 400 published papers to his name.
The Foundation, which has charitable status, will create 20 scientific research and administration jobs in the first year, growing to over 100 by 2020.
The centre, which will allow for athlete training, clinical and applied research, alongside training and recovery facilities, will be located beside the UPMC Sports Surgery Clinic in Santry.
“We have been delighted with the feedback we have received so far, both in terms of the ambition, the scale, but also the focuses of the group,” according to Dr Franklyn-Miller.