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Prof Liam Gallagher

  • Professor of Cancer Biology, UCD School of Biomolecular & Biomedical Science, University College Dublin
  • Deputy Director, Precision Oncology Ireland
  • Co-Lead, All-Island Cancer Research Institute
  • Conway Fellow, UCD Conway Institute
  • Co-Founder/Chief Scientific Officer, OncoAssure Ltd.


Professor William Gallagher is Full Professor of Cancer Biology at University College Dublin (UCD) and Deputy Director of Precision Oncology Ireland, a large-scale Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Strategic Partnership Programme involving 5 academic institutions, 6 cancer charities and 8 companies ( He previously led OPTi-PREDICT, an SFI Investigator Programme focused on identification and validation of prognostic biomarkers for early stage breast and prostate cancer. Prof. Gallagher was also Lead Investigator on the UCD-Wellcome Institutional Strategic Support Fund (ISSF) programme from 2016-2023; this programme focused on helping UCD’s researchers overcome systemic barriers to career and network development, ultimately unlocking future research potential within the University and beyond (

Currently, Prof. Gallagher is a primary driving force behind the All-Island Cancer Research Institute (AICRI), which is creating an overarching framework for cancer research across the entire island of Ireland ( AICRI-linked programmes were recently awarded over 12 million euro under the recent HEA North-South Research Programme, including an all-island Doctoral and Post-Doctoral Training Programme in Precision Cancer Medicine (AICRIstart) which Prof. Gallagher leads.

From 2016-2021, Professor Gallagher was Director of the UCD Conway Institute of Biomolecular and Biomedical Research, one of Ireland’s largest biomedical research facilities. From 2013-2019, he was the Director of BREAST-PREDICT, which was the first Irish Cancer Society Collaborative Cancer Research Centre (CCRC) to be funded ( This country-wide CCRC, which was supported to the level of 7.5 million euro and involved 6 academic institutions, as well as Cancer Trials Ireland, focused on developing more personalised treatment approaches for breast cancer.

From 2009-2014, Prof. Gallagher was also a co-PI and Deputy Co-ordinator of a major SFI-funded Strategic Research Cluster, Molecular Therapeutics of Cancer. He has co-ordinated three Marie Curie Industry Academia Partnerships and Pathways (IAPPs) projects under FP7, namely TARGET-MELANOMA, FAST-PATH and SYS-MEL. Prof. Gallagher was also Co-ordinator of a large-scale, multi-million euro, FP7 collaborative project, entitled RATHER.

Over the last 15 years, Prof. Gallagher has speared-headed several large-scale research infrastructure projects providing state-of-the-art instrumentation for researchers nationwide in the areas of cell, tissue and in vivo imaging, as well as molecular profiling (see and for recent examples).

Prof. Gallagher has received a number of awards for his research and innovation achievements in the oncology arena, including the NovaUCD 2011 Innovation Award, the inaugural Irish Association for Cancer Research Medal in 2017, the SFI Entrepreneurship Award in 2019 and the SFI Researcher of the Year Award in 2021. He has filed/been awarded multiple patents and has acted as consultant for a wide variety of industrial parties within the biomedical sphere. Prof. Gallagher has co-founded two molecular diagnostics companies, OncoMark Ltd. and OncoAssure Ltd., the former being acquired in March 2021 by the US company Danaher (Cepheid division).