Principal Investigators

Anne MacFarlane Ph.D is Professor of Primary Healthcare Research at the Graduate Entry Medical School, University of Limerick. She is the first social scientist to hold a Chair in academic primary care in Ireland. Anne has 20 years' experience of using qualitative research methods with a portfolio of completed health services research projects and educational research projects.

Professor Billy O’Connor is Foundation Professor and Head of Teaching and Research in Physiology at the University of Limerick Graduate Entry Medical School since 2007. Prior to this appointment he was Head of Neuroscience Research in UCD where he held an SFI Investigator Award and Professor of Pharmacology at the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.



Foundation Chair and Foundation Professor of Paediatrics at the Graduate Entry Medical School, University of Limerick and a Consultant General Paediatrician with a special interest in paediatric diabetes and endocrinology at the University Hospital, Limerick.

Professor Deirdre McGrath graduated from University College Cork with a degree in Medicine in 1991. She subsequently completed her Specialist Clinical Training in the UK and was awarded a Doctorate in Medicine degree by the University of London in 2002 on the Genetic Predisposition to Granulomatous Lung Diseases.

Ailish Hannigan is Associate Professor of Biomedical Statistics in the Graduate entry Medical School, UL. She has a degree in Applied Mathematics and Computing from the University of Limerick and a PhD in Biostatistics from University College Cork. Her research interests include the development and application of survival analysis and classification techniques to medicine and dentistry. She is also involved in statistics education research and is Education Officer of the Irish Statistical Association.

Nuala graduated in biochemistry and medicine from NUIG in 1991 and 1994 respectively. She completed a MSc. in clinical microbiology at QMW College, University of London in 1997 before becoming a registrar / lecturer in clinical microbiology at Beaumont Hospital / RCSI Dublin.

Dr Pat Kiely is Senior Lecturer in Molecular Sciences and Principal Investigator of the Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Biology in the Graduate Entry Medical School, University of Limerick. He is a member of the Health Research Institute, the Bernal Institute and a member of the 4i Centre for Interventions in Infection, Inflammation and Immunology (University of Limerick). The research emphasis in Dr Kiely’s laboratory is on deciphering the localized and transient signalling events which occur in cells during migration.

Dr. Chris Exton is currently a lecturer in the department of Computer Science and Information Systems at University of Limerick. He holds a B.Sc. in Psychology and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Monash University, Melbourne.

Prof J Tony Pembroke BSc PhD , Associate Professor of Industrial Biochemistry.  PhD NUIG in Molecular Genetics, EMBO Postdoctoral Fellow University of Leiden, OECD Fellow Rowett Institute, Aberdeen. Research interests in Molecular Microbiology, particularly in infectious ICE elements a group of mobile genetic elements prevalent in Vibrio cholerae and other entheric pathogens.

Education and employment history

BSc in Biochemistry

PhD protein chemistry/enzymology

Post-doctoral Research Associate - Food Science Department, North Carolina State University, USA and University College Cork.

Senior Research Officer, Chemistry Department, Teagasc, Moorepark.

Lecturer, Senior Lecturer and Associate Professor (since 2003) at the Department of Life Sciences, University of Limerick.

Research interests

food protein ingredients,