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Full NameProfessor Francis Finucane

Department:Endocrinology

Organisation:National University of Ireland Galway

Webpage:nuigalway.ie

Email Address:Email hidden; Javascript is required.

Research Fields
  • physiology and non-communicable disease
  • Other
Other Research Fields:

Obesity, diabetes, lifestyle interventions, public health policy

Postgrad Medical Specialties
  • Medicine
  • Public Health
Medical Subspecialties
  • Endocrinology
  • Other
Other Medical Specialties:

Obesity, Diabetes,

My Work

Francis Finucane is a consultant endocrinologist at Galway University Hospitals and an honorary personal professor in medicine at NUI Galway. He undertook a clinical research fellowship at St. James’s Hospital for which he was awarded an MD in 2008 by the University of Dublin (TCD). This work investigated cardiovascular and metabolic perturbations in Irish children with obesity as well as the response to exercise in young patients with type 2 diabetes. Specifically, he described for the first time in Irish children the association between excess body weight and elevated blood pressure and also insulin resistance.

Thereafter, Prof. Finucane won both the Graves'- and the Bristol Myers Squibb/ Sanofi- Travelling Fellowships from the Irish Endocrine Society in 2006, which funded the start of a post-doctoral fellowship at the MRC Epidemiology Unit in Cambridge, UK. This led to a three-year MRC-funded Career Development Fellowship there, where he led the first trial to show that aerobic exercise reduces liver fat content in humans. He also contributed to genetic epidemiological studies that identified mechanistically important diabetes risk markers and he devised a new method for measuring whole-body insulin sensitivity.

Since returning to Ireland in 2010, Prof. Finucane has established a regional bariatric service in the West of Ireland, the busiest centre in the country providing multidisciplinary care to patients with severe and complicated obesity. He was the clinical lead for endocrinology in the Saolta group from 2014 to 2018. He is a member of several international scientific organisations and is on the scientific committee of the European Diabetes Epidemiology Group since 2016. He has over 60 peer reviewed publications.

Recent Articles:
1. Difficulties with industry-led reformulation: https://theconversation.com/food-system-needs-a-revolution-not-tinkering-around-edges-by-the-ultra-processed-producers-120186

2. Our approach to obesity needs to be more compassionate: http://www.universitytimes.ie/2017/04/our-approach-to-obesity-needs-to-be-more-compassionate/

3. Ethical considerations in not providing care to patients with severe and complicated obesity: https://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/health-family/our-treatment-of-patients-with-severe-obesity-is-unethical-but-why-1.3553438

4. Childhood obesity screening is flawed public health policy: https://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/health-family/opinion-childhood-obesity-screening-pseudoscience-or-pragmatic-precaution-1.2153042

5. The Government strategy on tackling obesity is flawed for many reasons: https://www.independent.ie/opinion/comment/exercise-wont-rid-society-of-obesity-until-we-regulate-the-food-we-eat-35088163.html

6. Ronald McDonald House should not be built at the New National Children’s Hospital. https://theconversation.com/mcdonalds-is-a-social-and-healthcare-burden-whatever-its-charity-pr-might-indicate-105627 and https://www.irishexaminer.com/breakingnews/views/analysis/mcdonalds-is-a-social-and-healthcare-burden-whatever-its-charity-pr-might-indicate-888118.html

7. Myths about obesity and the harms they cause: https://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/health-family/obesity-myths-and-the-harm-they-cause-1.3825823

8. “Operation Humiliation”: https://www.independent.ie/opinion/comment/why-the-fat-should-not-be-in-the-fire-on-obesity-31004518.html

Potential Projects

Research Interests

Interventions in patients with severe and complicated obesity.
Metabolic changes after obesity surgery.
Extreme phenotypes of insulin resistance.
Type 2 diabetes in young people.
The relationship between adiposity and insulin resistance.
Structured lifestyle modification programmes to reduce cardiovascular risk.
Commercial influences on public health policy.