IBD is a group of chronic diseases in GIT of which Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are the major phenotypes. Global rates of IBD have risen dramatically in the industrialised world over the last 50 years and Australia has one of the highest incidence rates.

IBD are progressive conditions that primarily affects the colon and/or ileum. It characterised by repeated episodes of intestinal inflammation leading to tissue damage, intestinal remodelling and fibrosis. There is no cure for CD and treatment approaches are aimed at reducing episodes of inflammation.

Most IBD patients require lifelong treatment with immunosuppressive or immunomodulatory drugs and toxicity, cost and efficacy are issues of these treatments. Even with treatment over 70% of patients will require at least one surgical intervention. Therefore, new therapeutic options for IBD patients are required.

Our research is investigating non-immunosuppressive strategies for the treatment of IBD. In particular our work is focused on understanding imbalances in host-microbiome interactions, tissue metabolism and healing and utilising potential therapies that target these pathways. In utilising these approaches we aim to identify treatments that can promote mucosal healing and prevent inflammation without the need for long term inhibition of immune responses, ultimately improving quality of life for IBD patients.


Associate Professor Simon Keely, Dr Andrea Mathe, Dr Gang Liu

Project type 
Project Grant
Year of funding