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Professor Mary Ward

Professor of Nutrition and Dietetics

School of Biomedical Sciences
Research Institute
Biomedical Sciences Research Institute
Coleraine campus
+44 28 7012 3076
Room W2016
Cromore Road
Co. Londonderry
BT52 1SA

Mary Ward graduated from Trinity College Dublin with a BSc Hons Human Nutrition and Dietetics and from Ulster University with a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry where she is currently a Professor of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Her research at the Northern Ireland Centre for Food and Health (NICHE) is focused on B-vitamins involved in 1-C metabolism. She has vast experience of conducting highly controlled nutrition intervention studies in different population and clinical groups.

A particular interest of Mary's is the interaction between B-vitamins and a common polymorphism in the folate metabolising enzyme methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) which has led to the novel discovery (Patent EP2139488) that vitamin B2 (riboflavin) appears to be an important modulator of BP in individuals with a genetic pre-disposition for hypertension.

To date Mary has published more than 50 scientific papers in top-ranked journals across several disciplines. She has attracted significant external funding (over £4M) from government agencies in the UK and Ireland, the EU, Charities and Industry.

Mary is currently Deputy Director of the Wellcome Trust-Wolfson Northern Ireland Clinical Research Facility at the City Hospital Belfast and was Chair of the Nutrition Society (Irish Section) from 2009-13.

Research Interests

  • B-vitamins and related genetic factors involved in one-carbon metabolism
  • Gene-nutrient interactions
  • B-vitamin requirements in health & disease (CVD, cognitive health, bone health, coeliac disease, pregnancy)
  • Controlled dietary intervention studies in humans.

Teaching Interests

  • Clinical Nutrition
  • Nutrition and Metabolism
  • Nutrition Research

Administrative Roles

  • Course Director BSc Hons Dietetics

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