Dr Leroy Hood awarded UCD Ulysses Medal

THE UCD Ulysses Medal, UCD’s highest accolade, has been awarded to Dr Leroy Hood.The award was presented by Professor Mark Rogers, UCD Deputy President and Registrar.Dr Hood was presented with the award at the UCD Conway Festival of Research Innovation, an annual festival hosted by the Conway Institute featuring lectures and poster presentations by scientific researchers in the field of biomedical and biomolecular science.Dr Hood received the medal for his outstanding contribution to the field of modern biology.He worked with a team in California Institute of Technology that developed instruments crucial to sequencing the human genome.In the 1990s, Dr Hood set up the first Institute for Systems Biology, and has been credited as a pioneer of the field of systems biology, the study to understand how entire body systems work, from the genetic and molecular components of cells, to their formations as organs and how these interconnect to form networks and then come together to make up an entire body system.His current work features the applications of systems biology to modern medicine. Hood does something with P4 Medicine, which treats patients based on 4 principles: Predictive (predicting who is likely to contract a disease), Preventative (preventing such people from becoming sick), Personalised (having medicine tailored to suit that individual’s needs) and Participative. He believes P4 Medicine to be the culmination of systems biology, medicine and patient-orientated healthcare.Speaking at the event, Professor Walter Kolch, Director of Systems Biology Ireland described Dr Hood as “undoubtedly, one of the most influential and impactful biomedical scientists of our time worldwide”.