DEBRA Ireland is a member of the Health Research Charities Ireland group (HRCI). One of the aims of HRCI is to support charities in Ireland to fund healthcare research to assist them in improving the lives of those they support.

The Health Research Board (HRB) has been co-funding the HRCI-HRB Joint Funding Scheme with the HRCI since 2006. The HRB is the lead agency in Ireland supporting patient-centred research linked to health and social care. The HRCI-HRB Joint Funding Scheme allows charities to support patient-focused research of particular interest to specific patient groups. For DEBRA Ireland, this is research to improve the lives of those living with the rare, genetic skin condition, Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB). Through the HRCI-HRB Joint Funding Scheme, the costs of successful patient-focused research projects are shared by the HRB and the sponsoring charity, which must be a member of HRCI.

DEBRA Ireland is participating in the HRCI-HRB Joint Funding Scheme in 2021 based on our current research priorities, which are outlined below. All researchers must submit their applications to DEBRA Ireland directly to be considered for the scheme. The HRB will manage the awards

Expressions of Interest is open now, and will close Friday 20th August 2021 at 5pm.

Opening Date for Applications: 1st September 2021

Closing Date for Applications: 13th October 2021

Level of funding: Funding up to €300,000 (€100,000 p.a.)

Duration of Funding: 12 to 36 months

Focus of the call: We will prioritise applications that will contribute to knowledge of the causes, diagnosis and treatment for Dystrophic EB, Junctional EB, and EB Simplex based on the following areas: wound healing, pain management, gene therapy and medical devices.

For more information or to submit interest in applying, please contact: [email protected]

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A new spray treating internal blistering, mouth ulcerations and oral scarring is being developed by researchers in the University of Birmingham. Researchers in the University’s Healthcare Technologies Institute and the Institute of Inflammation and Ageing, are working alongside experts in dermatology and dentistry to formulate an oral spray designed for patients with Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB). The research project, funded by DEBRA Ireland and DEBRA UK, aims to alleviate damage to oral linings of the mouth caused by EB.

Blistering to the inside of the mouth, common among those living with EB, makes tasks such as eating, drinking and brushing of the teeth very painful and extremely difficult. Scarring as a result of such blistering, can affect the development of muscles and other tissues.

Over the next two years, the research team, led by Professor Liam Grover, will work alongside clinicians and patient groups on the design of the spray to ensure precise delivery to oral linings of the mouth. The aim of the research is to assess the feasibility of such preparations to be sprayed and to deliver the compound actively to the mouth lining, prior to proceeding to clinical studies.

Professors Adrian Heagerty and Liam Grover explain the project here:

For more detailed information about the project, please visit our website:

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