Ewch i’r prif gynnwys
Colin Dayan

Yr Athro Colin Dayan

Athro Clinigol

Yr Ysgol Meddygaeth


Our research group has two sections:

Thyroid Research Group

The Cardiff Thyroid Research Group has been at forefront of thyroid research for over 25 years with the work of many colleagues including Reg Hall, John Lazarus and Marian Ludgate. Our current focus is on Thyroid Eye Disease (Graves’ Orbitopathy, GO) and the mechanisms underlying this disfiguring and distressing condition including retro-orbital pre-adipocyte function and the effects of the microbiome. We also work closely with ophthalmology colleagues and as part of TEAMeD and the EUGOGO group to conduct clinical studies to improve therapies and implement measures to improve outcomes (www.btf-thyroid.org/projects/teamed/332-teamed-5).

The Thyroid Research Group also conducts large scale epidemiological, genetic and data linkage studies to define the effects of changes in thyroid hormone levels across the population, to study the effects of thyroid hormone replacement and the long-term outcomes of thyroid disease including thyroid disease in pregnancy.

Immunotherapy of Type 1 Diabetes

Our group is committed to finding low-risk immunotherapies able to preserve beta cell function in type 1 diabetes and introduce these therapies into clinic care. We collaborate with colleagues across the UK in the Type 1 Diabetes Immunotherapy Consortium to conduct clinical trials in adults and children with new-onset type 1 diabetes and develop new approaches to beta cell preservation (www.type1diabetesresearch.org.uk). Studies range from first-in-man to phase III. In this area we work closely with partners including Diabetes UK, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), the Diabetes Research Unit Wales, SAIL and the University of Bristol. We are developing large scale data linkage projects to define the outcomes for patients with type 1 diabetes and the potential benefits of beta cell preservation. 

Scientific contributions of our research group include:


  • First to clone and define antigen specific T cells from the target organ in Graves disease, demonstrating a highly focused but multi-antigenic response
  • First large RCT of diet vs diet and exercise in new-onset type 2 diabetes – indicating that diet alone is as effective as diet and exercise for glycaemic control and weight reduction
  • Set up of the UK Type 1 Diabetes Immunotherapy Consortium to coordinate immunotherapy trials in new-onset type 1 diabetes across the UK: increased recruitment into trials 10-fold; two multicenter studies fully recruited to date and to time/ahead of time with 4 in set-up.
  • Demonstration of the safety and potential for efficacy of peptide based immunotherapy for type 1 diabetes in man including two first-in-man studies.
  • Development of novel platforms for antigen specific immunotherapy and monitoring in type 1 diabetes including microneedle delivery and direct lymph node sampling in humans.
  • Development of data-linkage cohorts with SAIL (Farr Institute) covering subjects with thyroid disease and all children in Wales with type 1 diabetes (Brecon cohort): demonstration that variation in thyroid function even within the laboratory reference range affects a large range of clinical outcomes including miscarriage, obesity and fracture and that there is a persistent 4 fold excessive in admission rates for children diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in childhood.
  • Description of the genetic architecture underlying thyroid function using next generation sequencing and its application in Mendelian Randomisation to demonstrate an effect of fat mass on circulating T3 levels in children.







































Colin Dayan, MA MBBS, FRCP, PhD – biographical details.

Professor of Clinical Diabetes and Metabolism, Cardiff University School of Medicine.  

Colin Dayan trained in medicine at University College, Oxford, and Guy’s and Charing Cross Hospitals in London, UK before obtaining a PhD in the immunology of Graves’ Disease in Laboratory of Marc Feldmann. He then spent a year as an endocrine fellow at the Massachussetts General Hospital in Boston, USA before completing his specialist training in diabetes and endocrinology as a Lecturer in Bristol. He became a consultant senior lecturer in medicine (diabetes/endocrinology) at the University of Bristol in 1995 and Head of Clinical Research at the Henry Wellcome Laboratories for Integrative Neuroscience and Endocrinology in Bristol in 2002. In 2010, he was appointed to the Chair of Clinical Diabetes and Metabolism and Head of Section at Cardiff University School of Medicine. He served as Director of the Institute of Molecular and Experimental Medicine in 2011 – 2015.

He has a long established interest in translational research in the immunopathology of type 1 diabetes and is currently conducting early phase clinical trials in the development of antigen specific immunotherapy. His clinical interests in diabetes include management of poor compliance in type 1 diabetes, public health measures in the prevention of type 2 diabetes and models of community care in diabetes. He is the lead for diabetes in the Cardiff whole pancreas transplantation programme and with colleagues leads an All Wales anonymised data linkage programme for monitoring childhood type 1 diabetes. He has been part of 2 major EU FP7 programme grants in type 1 diabetes (and coordinator on one), a member of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Medical and Scientific Committee and the Welsh Diabetes Research Unit. Prof Dayan currently leads the Clinical Engagement and Training Core of the Diabetes UK funded type 1 diabetes UK immunotherapy Consortium which aims to coordinate and support combined efforts to bring immunotherapy for type 1 diabetes into clinical practice, and is Chair of the Type 1 diabetes national Prevention and Therapies Clinical Studies Group.

He also has research interests in thyroid disease which include thyroid autoimmunity, thyroid hormone replacement and bioavailability, genetic epidemiology as applied to population variation in thyroid hormone bioavailability and thyroid eye disease. He became secretary of the European Thyroid Association in 2013 and chairs the UK Thyroid Eye Disease Amsterdam Implementation Group.