Professor Ursula Fearon is head of Molecular Rheumatology, School of Medicine, Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute, Trinity College Dublin and a founding member of The EULAR Centre of Excellence for Rheumatology Research in Ireland. Professor Fearon’s research focuses on a bench-to-beside translational approach, specifically around molecular, metabolic and functional analysis of synovial tissue cell-cell interactions. It aims to define pathotype, disease progression and therapeutic response in patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis and Psoriatic Arthritis, in addition to the development of new therapeutic targets for patients who don’t respond to current medications. She has established strong collaborative research networks across Europe and the US, is a member of a several National and International research consortia; the Arthritis Research Coalition, European Synovitis Study Group and Outcome Measures in Rheumatoid Arthritis Clinical Trials (OMERACT), in addition to being Chair for the Global undergraduate awards in medicine. Professor Fearon has been awarded significant research funding from both National and International funding bodies, in addition to industry collaborative partnerships with leading pharma companies globally. She has published extensively in high impact peer-reviewed journals including The Lancet, Nature Rheumatology, Journal of Clinical investigation- Insights, PNAS and Annals of Rheumatic Diseases. The Group also received the EULAR centre of excellence award for research outputs and educational excellence in Rheumatology in 2014 and again in 2019, the only one awarded in Ireland.
Dr. O’Dwyer is a physician scientist and pulmonologist at the University of Michigan in the US. He attained his medical degree from University College Cork, National University of Ireland (NUI) in 2004 and subsequently went on to complete training in Internal Medicine achieving MRCPI in 2007.
He successfully completed for a post on the National Respiratory Medicine Specialist Registrar (SpR) training program in 2008, completing training in Respiratory medicine in 2014. During his SpR training Dr. O’Dwyer successfully completed a PhD in translation medicine at University College Dublin (NUI). In 2014, Dr. O’Dwyer matched through ERAS to a fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Michigan.
Dr. O’Dwyer is currently a tenure track Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine at Michigan. He is a member of the Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) Program and a co-Director of the Connective Tissue Disease-ILD program. Dr. O’Dwyer was awarded a pathway to independence award (K99/R00) from the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) at the NIH in 2018.
He is currently a principal investigator on an R00 and R56 award from NHLBI studying host microbiota interactions in lung in jury and repair. In addition, he is a co-investigator on an R01 from NHLBI. He also holds a grant to study Scleroderma ILD from Boehringer Ingelheim.
Prof Richard Wilson completed his medical degree at the Queen’s University Belfast (QUB) and then worked in N. Ireland and Scotland as a junior doctor. He undertook three years of basic science research in colorectal cancer for which he received his doctoral degree. He subsequently trained in clinical oncology in N. Ireland and attained UK accreditation. Following this, he undertook a Fellowship at the National Cancer Institute in the US National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, where he received specialist training in medical oncology, early phase cancer clinical trials and drug development. He returned to the UK as a Senior Lecturer in the Centre for Cancer Research and Cell Biology in QUB and Honorary Consultant Oncologist in the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust. He set up the first early phase cancer clinical trials programme on the island of Ireland, and also the regional N. Ireland Cancer Trials Network. He was Clinical Director of this regional network and Clinical Lead of the Belfast Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre until the end of 2018.
Richard moved in February 2019 from his position as Professor in Cancer Medicine in QUB to the Institute of Cancer Sciences in the University of Glasgow where he is now Professor of Gastrointestinal Oncology. Richard is also an Honorary Consultant in Medical Oncology in the Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre. He works as a medical oncologist in experimental cancer medicine and in lower gastrointestinal cancer (mainly in colorectal cancer but also in small bowel cancer and peritoneal malignancies) and conducts biological, translational and clinical research in these diseases. He is Chief Investigator on many local, national and international cancer clinical trials in both early and late phase settings, including FOCUS4, the UK flagship personalised medicine trial in colorectal cancer. He leads the International Rare Cancer Initiative Small Bowel Adenocarcinoma Working Group. He previously chaired both the UK National Cancer Research Institute Colorectal Cancer Clinical Studies Group and its Adjuvant and Advanced Disease Subgroup.
Richard is passionate about training the next generation of clinical academics, and is the clinical training lead for Glasgow in the TRACC programme, a Cancer Research UK funded programme run jointly between Glasgow and Edinburgh. This supports basic, translational and clinical cancer research training via PhD programmes for both speciality trainees from any cancer-focused discipline and also for intercalating medical and dental students.
Prof David McAllister is a WellcomeTrust Intermediate Clinical Fellow and Beit Fellow and Professor of Clinical Epidemiology and Medical Informatics at the University of Glasgow and is an Honorary Consultant in Public Health Medicine at Public Health Scotland.
His interest is in chronic disease epidemiology –diabetes, cardiovascular disease and multimorbidity –as well as routine healthcare data research.
He leads projects funded by Wellcome and the MRC where he uses Bayesian methods to analyse routine healthcare data alongside clinical trial data in order to both measure and improve trial representativeness/applicability.He also has an interest in global health, and is currently leading work looking at vaccine efficacy in low versus high income settings.During the COVID-19 pandemic –thanks to the agreement of the Wellcome Trust -he was able to divert much of his time to work for Public Health Scotland on COVID-19.
He used his expertise in routine data research to lead work examining the effect of COVID-19 on healthcare workers, teachersand care home residents, and to examine the effect of vaccinating healthcare workers on their household members. Internationally, he works with the RECORD committee on improving research methods in routine data epidemiology.
Prof Luke O’Neill is Professor of Biochemistry in the School of Biochemistry and Immunology, Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. He is a world expert on innate immunity and inflammation. His main research interests include Toll-like receptors, Inflammasomes and Immunometabolism. He is listed by Thompson Reuters/ Clarivates in the top 1% of immunologists in the world, based on citations per paper. Professor O’Neill is co-founder of Sitryx, which aims to develop new medicines for inflammatory diseases. Another company he co-founded, Inflazome was recently acquired by Roche.
He was awarded the Royal Dublin Society / Irish Times Boyle Medal for scientific excellence, the Royal Irish Academy Gold Medal for Life Sciences, The Society for Leukocyte Biology (SLB) Dolph O. Adams award, the European Federation of Immunology Societies Medal and in 2018 the Milstein Award of the International Cytokine and Interferon Society. He is a member of the Royal Irish Academy, EMBO (European Molecular Biology Organisation) and a Fellow of the Royal Society.
Dr Maja Wallberg is a Senior Research Manager at Wellcome, where she manages and develops projects in the £2.6b Discovery Research Portfolio. This includes open mode schemes, such as the Early Career, Career Development and Discovery Awards, as well as directed activities like institutes and partnerships. Prof Maja Wallberg, used to look after the now discontinued fellowship schemes for health care professionals, and is using what was learned from this to ensure that the new schemes are inclusive of applicants with diverse expertise and career paths.
She did her PhD in immunology at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden (where she is from), and did a postdoc and later led a research group at the University of Cambridge. She joined Wellcome in 2018.
Professor Lucy Chappell is Chief Scientific Adviser to the Department of Health and Social Care, Chief Executive Officer of the National Institute for Health Research, Professor of Obstetrics at King’s College London and Honorary Consultant Obstetrician at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust. She leads the NIHR together with Dr Louise Wood and is chair of the NIHR Strategy Board.
Professor Chappell has overall responsibility for DHSC research and development, including the NIHR, and supporting the department’s analysis function.
Professor Lucy Chappell is Professor in Obstetrics at King’s College London, Honorary Consultant Obstetrician at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and an NIHR Senior Investigator.