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Professor Colin Dayan
I moved from the University of Bristol to become Head of Section of the Centre for Endocrine and Diabetes Sciences at Cardiff University in 2010. Research in my group focuses on two areas of Diabetes and Metabolism, Type 1 diabetes and thyroid disease. I have a particular interest in designing and developing medium and large scale clinical studies to address key issues in translational medicine in these areas. Since 2000 I have been working in collaboration with Prof Mark Peakman at King’s College London to develop a “diabetes vaccine” to slow or halt the autoimmune process that destroys in the insulin making cells in Type 1 diabetes. We have been developing the approach of Peptide Immunotherapy delivered intradermally to promote tolerance to beta cell antigens without the risks of immunosuppression. A large panel of T cell peptide epitopes recognised by individuals with newly-diagnosed Type 1 diabetes has now been identified and in 2008 we completed a first-in-man phase 1a study with a leading candidate peptide derived from Proinsulin. We are leading on multicentre later phase studies of this approach as well as techniques to optimise the ability of antigen presenting cells in the skin to promote tolerance following peptide administration. We have an interest in optimising the immunotherapy and clinical management of the disfiguring and distressing complication of Graves’ disease know as Thyroid Eye Disease. A large multicentre UK study is underway (www.cirted.org), while at the same time our department is exploring the key role of the orbital pre-adipocyte in the pathogenesis of this disease.