Professor Bernard Corfe


Department of Oncology and Metabolism

Honorary Fellow

Professor of Human Nutrition and Health, Newcastle University.

Dr Bernard Corfe staff profile
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Full contact details

Professor Bernard Corfe
Department of Oncology and Metabolism
The Medical School
Beech Hill Road
S10 2RX

I was an academic at University of Sheffield from 2002-2021 following training in molecular pharmacology. I am currently Professor of Human Nutrition and Health at Newcastle University. I continue to collaborate closely with colleagues in Sheffield, including jointly supervising multiple PhD students.  

Research interests

Work in my group examines the relationship between diet, short-chain fatty acid production and metabolism and cell fate in the normal and neoplastic colon.  

Butyrate, cell fate determination and the role of keratins: Butyrate is described as an inhibitor of histone deacetylases – (although we disagree with this: Corfe, 2012), yet it is also a fermentation product of the gut microbiome present at pharmacologically active concentrations in the normal healthy colon lumen. It has been implicated as a mechanism for cancer prevention by fibre. A growing literature recognises protein acetylation as a regulatory mechanism comparable with phosphorylation. My group studies the cytoskeletal proteins keratin 8, 18 and 19 (Leech et al., 2008; Corfe et al., 2015; Evans et al., 2015) whose functions are controlled, inter alia, by acetylation and which are critical for normal metabolism in the colon, 

Diet, Nutrition and Irritable Bowel Syndrome: IBS is a prevalent, complex, multifactorial and under-funded / under-researched condition. My team are actively investigating the potential of nutrients in management of IBS, particularly vitamin D (Tazzyman et al., 2015). 


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Journal articles

Conference proceedings papers

Research group

PhD Students

  • Dr Alenka Brooks
  • Claire Williams 
  • Sabeen Zahra 
  • Abeir Elmogassabi 
  • Brenda Ojeda Lopez 
  • Azeer Zafar 

MD Students

  • Dr Thomas Archer
  • Dr Gloria Tun 
Professional activities and memberships
  • Editorial Board Member: European Journal of Nutrition.
  • Editorial Board Member: International Journal of Experimental Pathology. 
  • Trustee, Honorary Programmes Officer, Nutrition Society.
  • Associate Editor, Nutrition & Cancer.
  • Associate Editor, Journal of Integrated OMICS.