Lab Members


Research Manager

Dr Janice O'Sullivan

Janice_O'SullivanJanice graduated with a BSc in Biotechnology from the National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG) in 2008. Having completed an internship in orthopaedic research in Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, she carried out her PhD in the area of adult stem cell therapeutics for osteoarthritic disease under the supervision of Prof. Frank Barry and Dr. Mary Murphy in the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), NUIG. Her thesis is entitled “Glycosaminoglycan-Dependent Isolation of Mesenchymal Chondroprogenitor Populations from Human Bone Marrow”. She joined the RCSI Anatomy Department in 2013 as a postdoctoral researcher, working on a novel growth factor delivery system that targets Cardiac Stem Cells for the treatment of heart failure. Following this, Janice became the AMCARE Programme Manager and has recently taken over project management of the DRIVE Project. Janice also contributes as a stem cell biologist and is involved in managing administration and communications for the Duffy Kelly Lab.


Research Fellows

Dr Eimear Dolan

Eimear_DolanEimear graduated with a BE in Biomedical Engineering from the National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG). She continued at NUIG to pursue her PhD under the supervision of Dr Laoise McNamara and in conjunction with Stryker Instruments on the subject of bone healing. She joined Trinity College Dublin in 2014, working on the AMCARE project with Dr Bruce Murphy. Within AMCARE, Eimear works on the development and coupling of a medical device system with smart biomaterials and stem cells for the treatment of myocardial infarction. Eimear joined RCSI as a Research Fellow in 2016. As well as continuing her AMCARE work, she now also works on the DRIVE project, where she is using her experience to date to co-ordinate the translational reality of the DRIVE project technologies. Eimear also contributes to areas of cell culture and assay techniques (both cell line and primary culture), biomaterials and medical device design. Eimear is currently a visiting Research Fellow in the Lab of DKL collaborator Prof Ellen Roche at IMES, MIT.

Dr Scott Robinson

Eimear_DolanScott graduated with a BS in mechanical engineering from Union College, NY in 2003. He went on to obtain his MD/PhD from Emory University and Georgia Institute of Technology. He completed his PhD thesis entitled "Determining the Functional Significance of Endothelial Progenitor Cells" under the supervision of Dr. W. Robert Taylor in 2010 and graduated from medical school in 2014. He is currently completing his vascular surgery residency at the University of Michigan, and was recently awarded an EDGE Fellowship to work at NUI Galway under the supervision of Prof Duffy. Scott's Fellowship, which is co-funded by the AMBER Centre and the European Union’s Marie Skłodowska-Curie Programme began in July 2017. Scott is working on the development of a versatile pro-angiogenic drug delivery platform to (a) enhance pancreatic islet transplantation and (b) augment diabetic wound healing for diabetes treatment.


Postdoctoral Researchers

Laura Gallagher

Laura_GallagherLaura graduated from University College Dublin (UCD) with a BSc in Biomedical, Health and Life Sciences. She first joined the AMCARE project as a Research Assistant, focusing on assessing the ability of biomaterials to support stem cell viability and metabolic activity under normoxic and hypoxic/ischemic environments in vitro. She hasjust completed her PhD through AMCARE project, funded by the Anatomical Society under the supervision of Prof Garry Duffy, Prof Fergal O'Brien and Dr Tom Farrell. Laura was responsible for assaying the bioactivity and release of growth factors from nanoparticles, with a view to creating a novel drug/cell delivery system for the treatment of myocardial infarction. Laura now works on the DRIVE project.


Research Assistants

Kevin Behan

Kevin_BehanKevin is currently part of the ChemoGel team, which aims to develop a loco-regional drug delivery system for oncology applications. He completed his undergraduate degree in Chemical Sciences at the Dublin Institute of Technology, graduating in 2007. Following this, he worked as a research assistant within the Centre for Microscopy and Analysis, Trinity College Dublin. In 2009, he moved to the Comprehensive Cancer Imaging Centre at Imperial College London and remained there until 2013. During this time, he gained his MSc degree in Radiopharmaceutics and PET Radiochemistry. In 2013, he started a Marie Curie-funded PhD as part of the NeoGel project, under the supervision of Dr. Dermot Brougham and Prof. Andreas Heise. Primarily based at Dublin City University, he also spent 18 months in the labs of the industrial partner, DSM, in Maastricht, The Netherlands. His project has focused on the development of magnetic hydrogel nanocomposites as magnetically controlled drug delivery devices. He is due to submit his thesis in early 2018.

Niall Cronin

Aamir_HameedNiall graduated from UCD with a BSc in Cell and Molecular Biology and has since completed his MSc in Biomedical Science at NUIG where he gained good background knowledge of the biomedical sector both in research and industry. Currently at RCSI, Niall is working on the ChemoGel project, where he is assisting on novel approaches for the site-directed application of chemotherapeutic agents to overcome the systemic side effects of current therapies.


PhD Students

Rachel Beatty

Rita_IbanezRachel Beatty has completed her Bachelor of Science in NUI Galway. She specialised in Anatomy and will graduate in 2017 with a 2:1 degree. Her final year project involved studying morphological aspects of the foot of a stick insect. During this project she gained experience in many microscopic techniques including SEM and epifluorescence microscopy. Rachel was granted a research scholarship by NUIG's College of Medicine Nursing and Health Sciences to work on the AMCARE project under the supervision of Prof Garry Duffy during the summer of 2017. She is now pursuing a PhD on materials to improve cell delivery to tissues and organs under Garry's supervision in the Duffy Lab, NUIG.

Joanne O'Dwyer

joanne_o'dwyerJoanne obtained her B.Sc. in Pharmacy from RCSI before going on to complete her Masters in Pharmacy there. She then worked in both Community and Hospital Pharmacy before returning to RCSI in 2015 to begin a PhD in the areas of Pharmaceutics and Tissue Engineering. Her research is based on the use of novel polymers to develop injectable hydrogels capable of delivering growth factor loaded nanoparticles and stem cells to the heart following myocardial infarction. Joanne is a SFI-funded PhD student under the TREND (TRanslational REsearch in Nanomedical Devices) Project at RCSI, and is supervised by Prof Sally-Ann Cryan, Prof Garry Duffy and Prof Andreas Heise. Joanne was awarded the RAMI Bronze Medal for "Best Overall Presentation" at the 23rd Bioengineering in Ireland (BinI) Conference in 2017.

Liam McDonough

Liam_McDonoughLiam completed his undergraduate degree in Pharmacy at the RCSI.  He subsequently completed a 6 month academic internship on the AMCARE project, where he synthesised nanoparticles for controlled drug delivery to the heart. Liam will pursue a multidisciplinary PhD funded through the DRIVE Programme, focusing on the optimisation and clinical translation of smart biomaterials for islet transplant. Liam is supervised by Dr Helena Kelly and Prof Garry Duffy.

Caroline Herron

Caroline_HerronCaroline obtained her medical degree from RCSI in 2008. She is currently a specialist registrar in general surgery. The focus of her PhD is angiogenesis , with a particular focus on therapeutic angiogenesis in critical limb ischaemia. She has presented both nationally and internationally and was awarded the Irish Association of Vascular Surgeons Best Research Presentation 2014 and the UK and Ireland Controlled Release Society Best Oral Presentation 2015. Caroline is supervised by Prof Garry Duffy at RCSI.

Seóna Rossi

Seona_RossiSeóna completed her B.Sc. (Pharm) in Trinity College Dublin in 2012. She obtained her M.Pharm. from RCSI in 2013 and subsequently registered with the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland. Following a year working as a community pharmacist, she returned to RCSI to commence a Ph.D. in Pharmaceutics under the supervision of Dr. Helena Kelly and Dr. Ben Ryan in 2014. Her research focuses on developing novel drug delivery platforms for intratumoural delivery of traditional and novel chemotherapeutics. Local, minimally invasive delivery of chemotherapeutics aims to improve treatment outcomes and reduce the off target side effects commonly associated with systemic delivery. She is also acting as a Senior Demonstrator in the School of Pharmacy in RCSI.

William Whyte

William_WhyteWilliam is currently pursuing a PhD in Bioengineering through the AMBER (Advanced Materials and BioEngineering Research) centre. He graduated as a Pharmacist from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland in 2013. Since then, he has worked in areas ranging from bone regeneration as a member of the Tissue Engineering Research Group in RCSI to medical device development in the Wyss Institute, Harvard University. His current research at the Duffy lab, NUIG focuses on the development of a novel method to deliver stem cell therapeutics to the heart for the treatment of cardiovascular disease. William recently won 1st Prize for “Best Early Stage Research Presentation”, at the 22nd Annual Conference of Bioengineering in Ireland (BinI 2016).

Ruth Levey

Ruth_LeveyRuth graduated with an honours Bachelor of Science in Anatomy from NUI Galway in 2016. During her undergraduate degree she was awarded an Anatomical Society summer vacation research scholarship and a CMNHS research scholarship, to carry out research in the field of molecular biology. After graduating she worked as a research assistant in the electron microscope unit and as a part-time lab demonstrator in the Discipline of Anatomy. Due to her interest in biomedical engineering applications and microscopy, she has since started a PhD as part of the DRIVE project at NUIG, under the supervision of Prof Garry Duffy. This project aims to develop a cell reservoir system for replenishable, retrievable delivery of β-cells for type 1 diabetes. It is funded by the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences NUIG and the DRIVE project.

David Monahan

David_MonahanDavid is currently pursuing a structured PhD in Anatomy at NUIG under the supervision of Prof Garry Duffy. His research focuses on stem cell therapeutics for the treatment of cardiovascular disease and is funded by an Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship. In 2016 he graduated from Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) with a first class honours degree in Biomedical Science majoring in cellular pathology and clinical biochemistry. He has previously worked as a Medical Scientist in histopathology in both RCSI and St. Vincent's University Hospital. As a student he was awarded a HRB summer scholarship to conduct research at the Tissue Engineering Research Group , RCSI focusing on Stem Cell seeded scaffolds for osteochondral defect repair. He then returned to TERG to complete his thesis focusing on collagen based biomaterials for the ex vivo culture of breast tumour for which he won first prize at the Annual School of Biological Sciences Research Day, DIT, 2016.



Undergraduate Students

Clare Chadda

Clare_ChaddaI am a final year Biomedical Science student majoring in Anatomy at NUIG. As part of my final year project, I am focusing on therapeutic epicardium for the delivery of pro regenerative cargoes under the supervision of Prof Duffy in the Duffy Lab.

Kaylin Moran

Kaylin_MoranI’m a final year biomedical science student studying anatomy. I am conducting a project for my thesis as part of the Duffy Lab in which I am testing the diffusion of molecules such as insulin and IgG across potential membranes for an implantable cell delivery device.

Damilola Omotosho

Damilola_OmotoshoI'm a final year Anatomy student in NUIG, due to graduate in 2018. I'm currently pursuing myfinal year research project, which mainly focuses on the investigation of biomaterial delivery strategies for Acute MI. I'm working alongside David Monahan, under the supervision of Prof Garry Duffy. Throughout the course of my project, I have gained microscopy techniques including TEM, and Light Microscopy. I have also gained core laboratory skills including immunohostochemistry, histological staining and tissue processing techniques.

Ericka Maye

Ericka_MayeI'm a final year BSc. student studying Anatomy in NUI Galway, due to graduate in 2018. I'm currently doing my final year research project on DRIVE implants with a particular focus on the assessment of tissue/device interface, alongside Ruth Levey under the supervision of Prof Garry Duffy. During the course of my project, I will employ many microscopic techniques such as SEM, TEM, Confocal, Light and Polarized Light Microscopy to investigate the fibrotic response to the DRIVE implants.

Fiona Cronin

Fiona_CroninI'm a a final year Biomedical Science student specialising in anatomy. For my final year project I will be working on the DRIVE project, undertaking an assessment of vascularisation and fibrous capsule formation. A range of techniques will be used including; histology, immunostaining, confocal microscopy, image analysis and stereology.