NUI Galway’s Adult Learners Information Evening
Wednesday, 7 May 2014
Students seeking to develop new skills or considering part-time study options are advised to visit NUI Galway’s Adult Learners Information Evening on Tuesday, 13 May from 5-7.30pm in the Orbsen Building on the University campus. An extensive range of part-time, flexible-learning programmes are on offer suitable for those who require professional development opportunities to up-skill or enhance their career prospects. Students are invited along to meet representatives from over 30 part-time programmes which will be showcased at the event, these include subject areas of: Business and managment, Community Education, Education & Training, Early Childhood Studies, Languages, Information Technology, Pre-University Courses, and Science and Technology programmes. “Having recently rebranded the area of adult education to its new title of Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development, the Centre will continue to offer the same commitment and support to adult learners by dedicated team members, but will also provide educational opportunities and programmes which focus on up-skilling and cross-skilling students for today’s competitive and fast-changing market place” explains Centre Director, Nuala McGuinn. NUI Galway’s Adult Learning and Professional Development programmes suit students with a variety of learning and lifestyle needs. Courses are offered through classroom-based mode, online learning or through a blend of both, offering flexibility and support to prospective students. Ms McGuinn continued, “While students may choose programmes for their own personal development and enjoyment, the majority of learners are seeking career advancement and new skills to enhance their CV. Programme content which is offered in a flexible manner, meets the professional develoment requirements of learners while enabling them to continue in or seek employment will always be in high demand.” Some of the newer programmes on offer this year include the Diploma in Business Analytics and the Diploma in E-business Analysis. These programmes aim to develop students’ analytical skills and their business/technology skills and also their understanding of information systems within organsations. Interest in programmes in the Science and Technology area including specialisms in Medical Device Science, Environmental Sustainability and Lean & Quality Systems has grown over the past number of years as a direct result of industry requiring increased skills in these areas. Study options are available at Diploma, Degree and individual module level. Diplomas are also available in a selection of high quality language courses for adult learners. Students practice their chosen language through a variety of activities, such as guided speaking practice, listening comprehension activities, grammar and vocabulary exercises. Languages on offer include Gaeilge, French, Italian (via classroom mode and online), Spanish and German. Students can also chose to take individual modules from the suite of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) credit options and may be useful for learners who do not have the time to commit to a full programme of study or for those who require a module for the purposes of retraining or up-skilling. Standalone modules are available in Innovation Management, Technology Management, Education and Training, Early Childhood Studies, Community Education and Software Engineering. This year many of our popular programmes such as the fully online MSc in Software Engineering and Database Technologies, Diploma in Software Engineering and the Professional Diploma in Education (Further Education) are on offer again. Additionally, the Postgraduate Diploma/Certificate in Practice Based Play Therapy is available in conjunction with the Academy of Play and Child Psychotherapy (APAC), this course is ideal for teachers and educators who wish to add therapeutic play skills to their existing teaching or psychology skills for working with children. A full list of all programmes and application details are available at www.nuigalway.ie/adultlearning. Additional information is available at by contacting the Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development at firstname.lastname@example.org or 091 495241, or visit the Centre’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/nuigalway.adulted. -Ends-
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Cell EXPLORERS Go International!
Wednesday, 7 May 2014
Cell EXPLORERS represented Ireland as the only Irish science outreach representative group at the National Student Travel Foundation (NSTF) Malta Science Expo, which took place during April in the Maltese capital Valletta. To encourage young peoples’ engagement in science, the Expo invites science communicators from abroad to attend and give workshops to inspire and excite the next generation of scientists. The NSTF Malta Science Expo is a successful science engagement programme that has run for several years. It is composed of a comprehensive set of science based competitions for students as well as a programme of scientific activities delivered by both Maltese and International scientists. This year, Cell EXPLORERS had the opportunity to bring their hands-on molecular biology activities to the Expo. A team of three scientists, led by Programme Director Dr Muriel Grenon, travelled from NUI Galway to bring the ‘Fantastic DNA’ workshop to the primary school children of Malta. During the week, over 400 Maltese children performed banana DNA extractions with the Cell EXPLORERS team. Based in the School of Natural Sciences in NUI Galway, Cell EXPLORERS is an outreach programme that proposes hands-on and fun practice of cellular and molecular biology to engage young people in biological and biomedical sciences. The programme, funded by the Wellcome Trust and Science Foundation Ireland Discover Science and Engineering Awards, is piloting a model of sustainable public engagement in science unique in Ireland. This model involves both a curriculum-integrated component and a strong base of volunteering undergraduate, postgraduate students, lecturers and researchers. Expo organiser, Karl Agius, was pleased with the performance of Cell EXPLORERS at the event: “Cell EXPLORERS have continued to improve the quality and reach of the NSTF Science Expo through their workshop. Thanks to their enthusiasm and communication skills, they excited and motivated the kids to the wonders and realities of science and imbued in them the wish to know more.” Dr Grenon was also delighted with the positive response of the Maltese children and teachers to the workshop: “It is incredible to see that the hands on science lesson designed by NUI Galway Cell EXPLORERS undergraduate students works as well in Malta than in Ireland. We have met a lot of interest among teachers, students and lecturers, and initiated collaborations which should allow the Cell EXPLORERS model to develop further away than Ireland.” Cell EXPLORERS continues to expand its activities here in Ireland, with the first ever Bio-EXPLORERS science holiday camps taking place this year in conjunction with Eco-EXPLORERS. For more information on Cell EXPLORERS and any upcoming activities visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/bughunters/ or take a look at their facebook site at https://www.facebook.com/Cellexplorers. -Ends-
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NUI Galway Societies Scoop Two Awards at National BICS Ceremony
Wednesday, 7 May 2014
NUI Galway societies were presented with two awards at the recent Board of Irish College Societies (BICS) National Society Awards. Over 360 students and 50 adjudicators from across Ireland came together to celebrate the achievements of students involved in society organisation at the highest level. The Awards ceremony took place in the spectacular Titanic Museum in Belfast, with presentations made to 16 award winners, from nine different categories. This year, the NUI Galway Astronomy Society won the Best New Society Award for an outstanding year in which they encouraged the campus and general public to explore and look up at the night’s sky. Their galactic variety of events promoted astronomy across campus and awakened a curiosity to what the cosmos is all about. They organised the first Science Fortnight and hosted numerous guest speakers, including Professor Joslyn Bell. NUI Galway's second award of the evening was in the Best Photo category. The award, which best captured the spirit of societies, went to the Rovers Society, an outdoor society, based on the scouting ethos, bringing the spirit of activity, involvement and volunteering to third-level. Since its inauguration in 1999 NUI Galway has won more national society awards than any other college in Ireland and tops the leader board at 35 trophies, with the next competitor standing at 24. NUI Galway Societies Officer and BICS Awards Coordinator, Riona Hughes, said: “The two-day event was a major success. It was all about celebrating, all of the societies who attended had achieved a very high standard in their own institutions and the judges were very impressed and had two very long days of deliberation which included interviews with all the nominees. The BICS Awards are the highlight of the societies calendar and afford them an opportunity to network and share ideas and we are already expecting great things next year. The enthusiasm, talent, generosity and vision of all the students present augurs well for the future of our country.” For more info on BICS Awards visit www.bics.ie. -ENDS-
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School of Nursing and Midwifery Research Paper Wins at Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland
Thursday, 8 May 2014
A paper published by the Pulmonary Rehabilitation in Nurse-led Community Environment (PRINCE) research team won the General Practice category at the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland (RAMI) Doctor Awards recently. The winning paper examined the effectiveness of a structured education pulmonary rehabilitation programme for improving the health status of people with moderate and severe Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) in primary care. The study was funded by the HRB and consisted of a two-armed randomised cluster trial. In one arm (intervention group), persons with COPD received a structured education pulmonary rehabilitation programme, while the other arm (control group) received usual care. The study found that people who attended the programme were significantly better able to manage their breathing difficulties than those who did not attend. Principal study investigators for the study were Professor Kathy Murphy and Dr Dympna Casey of NUI Galway’s School of Nursing & Midwifery, and involved collaboration with researchers in NUI Galway, the UK and the HSE. The authors were Dr Dympna Casey, Professor Kathy Murphy, Professor Declan Devane, Dr Adeline Cooney, Bernard McCarthy, Lorraine Mee, Dr John Newell, Professor Eamon O’Shea, Dr Carl Scarrott, Dr Paddy Gillespie, Collette Kirwan and Professor Andrew W. Murphy. Andrew W. Murphy, Professor of General Practice at NUI Galway, accepted the award on behalf of the team: “The RAMI awards recognise excellence in international peer reviewed clinical research papers which have been carried out in Ireland. Our study involving 32 general practices and 350 participants, found that a primary care based pulmonary rehabilitation programme facilitated by trained physiotherapists and practice nurses who had no prior COPD expertise, is feasible, safe, and effective.” Co- principal study investigator Dr Dympna Casey said: “We are thrilled that our paper received this award, we both feel strongly that health care research must make a real difference to patients’ lives and we are delighted that the findings of our large trial does just that.” The winning paper is available from the following link http://thorax.bmj.com/content/early/2013/06/09/thoraxjnl-2012-203103.long#aff-5 -Ends-
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NUI Galway Joins All-Ireland Palliative Care Institute
Thursday, 8 May 2014
NUI Galway has become a new partner of the All Ireland Institute of Hospice Palliative Care (AIIHPC). The new membership is part of a significant expansion of AIIHPC’s partner organisations from 12 to 17. Following this expansion its partners now include all Universities and major hospice providers and on the Island of Ireland. AIIHPC, the first organisation of its kind in Ireland, was established in October 2010, following a successful bid by the 12 Consortium members to secure funding. The Institute works to improve policy and practice, education and research relating to hospice and palliative care in both the Republic and Northern Ireland. The Institute is particularly committed to the engagement of users, carers and communities. The expanded make up of AIIHPC was officially launched by the Minister for Agriculture, Marine and Food Simon Coveney TD at Marymount University Hospital and Hospice. Minister Coveney said: “It is a pleasure to formally recognise the enlarged consortium of partners working together to ultimately benefit patients and their families. The Institute is playing a key role – informing improvement, engaging with communities, facilitating change and leading developments.” Kathy Murphy, Professor of Nursing at NUI Galway and member of the AIIPHC Management Committee, said: “NUI Galway is pleased to be part of this important research, education and practice network. This collaboration will enable more effective knowledge exchange and development resulting ultimately in better outcomes for those receiving palliative care.” The 12 original Consortium members are: Dublin Academic Medical Centre; Milford Care Centre, Castletroy, Limerick; Marie Curie Centre, Belfast; Northern Ireland Hospice, Belfast; Our Lady's Hospice & Care Services, Dublin; Queens University Belfast; St. Francis Hospice, Raheny, Dublin, St. James's Hospital, Dublin; Trinity College Dublin; University College Dublin; University of Limerick and the University of Ulster. Other new partners include DCU, Marymount University Hospital and Hospice, NUI Maynooth and UCC. AIIHPC Deputy Chairperson, and CEO Our Lady’s Hospice and Services in Harold Cross, Mo Flynn said the expansion showed strong and growing support for the Institute. “The five additional members will further increase AIIHPC’s capacity to benefit patients who receive palliative and end of life care and their families. Working together, and across Ireland, the Institute is achieving real impact and helping to drive change.” The significant bulk of AIIHPC’s funding comes from The Atlantic Philanthropies, with additional funding from Health Research Board, Irish Cancer Society, Irish Hospice Foundation and the Public Health Agency. Consortium members also contribute funding. -Ends-
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Gold Medal Launched to Honour Leading West of Ireland Cardiologist!
Thursday, 8 May 2014
A gold medal which will be awarded each year to the most outstanding student on the Masters in Preventive Cardiology programme at NUI Galway was inaugurated this week at a special ceremony in the Croí Heart and Stroke Centre, Galway The Kieran Daly Medal was inaugurated to honour the immeasurable contribution which Dr. Kieran Daly, Honorary Clinical Professor in Medicine at NUI Galway and Consultant Cardiologist at Galway University Hospitals, has made to education and training in Cardiology over a long and distinguished career. Additionally, the medal honours the leadership Dr Daly has shown over many years , firstly as Research & Medical Director of Croí and for the past five years as Chairperson of the organisations Board of Directors, a position which he retired from earlier this month. At the launch of this prestigious award, Dr. Gerard Flaherty, Programme Director of the NUIG Masters in Preventive Cardiology programme, one of only two such courses in the world, spoke of the very high esteem in which Dr. Daly is held by his colleagues, students and trainees over the years. Having worked with Dr. Daly, he added that he “always admired his dedication, intellect, technical skills, and consummate professionalism, all fitting attributes to be associated with graduates from the Masters programme”. Dr. Flaherty added that the award of this medal at the annual conferring ceremony at NUI Galway would help to raise the profile of this popular programme and ensure that it continues to attract the most capable and highly motivated students. He thanked Dr. Daly for allowing his name to be associated with the award. Speaking at the launch of the Kieran Daly Medal, Croí CEO, Neil Johnson said "this is a very appropriate acknowledgement to the contribution Kieran Daly has made to the advancement of Cardiology education and practice in the west of Ireland". The first group of students on the Masters in Preventive Cardiology programme at NUI Galway are due to graduate in November this year. This unique programme is delivered over a 12-month period as a full-time Level 9 degree programme, with most of the didactic and much of the clinical instruction delivered in the state-of-the-art Croí Heart and Stroke Centre in Galway. In addition, students have access to e-learning resources developed by the multiprofessional teaching faculty at Croí and NUI Galway. Places on the programme for 2014/15 are filling fast and any interested applicant should apply at www.pac.ie/nuigalway. -Ends-
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NUI Galway Records 581 Species on Campus in 24 Hours
Thursday, 8 May 2014
NUI Galway has won the top award for most biodiverse campus at Ireland’s first Intervarsity BioBlitz competition, beating off stiff competition from UCC, TCD, DCU and Dundalk IT. Over a 24 hour period, 43 volunteers combed the University’s campus and recorded a total of 581 species. With extensive semi-natural habitats on NUI Galway grounds, the BioBlitz teams recorded 333 plants and tree species, 55 bird species, 75 insect species- including 21 butterflies and moths, 33 diatoms, 30 terrestrial and freshwater slugs and snails, 19 different mosses, 18 other invertebrates, 8 mammals, 5 lichens, 3 fish, a frog and 1 alga. Along with NUI Galway staff and students, many volunteers were graduates of NUI Galway and specifically School of Natural Sciences. They are now themselves staff in GMIT, NUI Maynooth, UCD, National Parks and Wildlife Services, all as professional field ecologists Ireland’s BioBlitz is designed to increase public awareness of the variety of life in Ireland and to highlight some of the ecological services that biodiversity provides to enhance our quality of life at the global and the local level. The Bioblitz demonstrates the high level of skill and expertise necessary to study many aspects of Ireland’s biological diversity. It also demonstrates the importance of being able to survey and identify plants and animalsas these are important aspects of Ireland’s biodiversity and skills that are taught at NUI Galway. Keith Warnock, Vice-President for Capital Projects: “The University is very pleased to have participated in the BioBlitz, and delighted to have emerged as the campus with the highest level of biodiversity. We have worked hard to ensure that as new buildings are constructed in response to growing student numbers and research activity, the built environment leaves ample room for this wide range of plant and animal life.” This initiative was supported by NUI Galway’s School of Natural Sciences, the Buildings Office and the Green Campus team. NUI Galway’s statistics from the BioBlitz competition can be viewed at http://records.biodiversityireland.ie/bioblitz.php?fk=IntervarsityBioBlitz2014_NUIGalwaySite&sn=NUI%20Galway&bkey=IntervarsityBioBlitz2014. -Ends-
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‘Cyber Girls’ Movement to Increase Female Interest and Awareness in Technology Returns to Galway
Monday, 12 May 2014
‘Rails Girls Galway’ is part of a worldwide movement that hopes to bridge the gender divide in technology and to facilitate women in learning computer programming. Returning to Galway this year the event aimed at females interested in computing technology and engineering will take place this summer in NUI Galway. The free weekend workshop will provide women with the tools and the collective learning community to build web applications and software services. It will be held on 20-21 June at the Insight Centre for Data Analytics located in the Dangan IDA Business Park. The organisers are mainly young female IT researchers involved in local third level colleges, businesses, schools and volunteer digital makers’ clubs. Though primarily targeting the local female population, there will also be participants from across Ireland and from overseas. The weekend event is free, is open to all women of any age from sixteen years upwards, and suitable for both those who wish to learn how to code and those with experience of programming. The workshops will use 'Ruby on Rails', a powerful web application framework for the Ruby programming language. According to Myriam Leggieri, Insight researcher and one of the chief organisers, “Last year’s event in Galway was an outstanding success with women of all ages from a range of backgrounds learning together. We want to build on the dynamic that was so evident in 2013 and to make ‘Rail Girls’ an annual activity in a city that is and can develop even more as a vibrant hub for digital industries and innovation.” Ireland needs a generation of indigenous young coders of both sexes to help lay the foundations of the ‘Knowledge Economy’ and create the products for a sustainable future. There is, in particular, a serious shortage of female IT developers in the country and across the world as well as in the professions of science, technology, engineering and maths professions generally. “There is no reason why this should be the case except for a lack of exposure to such environments. Events such as 'Rails Girls' directly addresses the lack of exposure to technology and empowers girls to take the first step in learning these in-demand skills and acquiring the skills to conquer one of the last great frontiers of science, namely the World Wide Web” Ms Leggieri said. The first event, launched by Linda Liukas and Karri Saarinen, was held in Helsinki in 2010. It now is a worldwide phenomenon. Karri summarised the philosophy behind the movement: “The Internet was built by, and for, boys. As a girl, one often feels like lacking the vocabulary to access it. With ‘Rails for Girls’, we want to demystify the world of web applications and encourage women to learn about software development and programming. We believe that women need the skills and language to understand that world.” Further information and application forms are available at www.railsgirls.com/galway. There are a limited amount of places available so prompt registration is recommended. The closing date for applications is Thursday, 5 June. -Ends-
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Orbsen Therapeutics Cell Therapy Selected for Diabetic Wound Clinical Trial Led by NUI Galway and Steno Diabetes Centre
Monday, 12 May 2014
The European Union FP7-funded REDDSTAR consortium has selected Orbsen Therapeutics’ proprietary cell therapy (Cyndacel-M ™) to be tested in a phase 1b clinical trial in diabetic patients suffering with ulcerating (non-healing) wounds. The trial will be led by the Steno Diabetes Centre in Copenhagen in 2015. Orbsen Therapeutics proprietary stromal cell therapy (Cyndacel-M ™) has been selected to be tested in a EU Framework 7 (FP7) funded safety trial for the treatment of non-healing, ulcerating wounds in patients with diabetes. The project known by the acronym “REDDSTAR” (Repair of Diabetic Damage by Stromal Cell Administration) is being co-ordinated by Professor Timothy O’Brien, Dean of Medicine and Director of Ireland’s Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway. Approximately 50 million diabetic EU citizens are using approved anti-diabetic agents to control their diabetes. However, diabetes still leads to 6 progressive complications, namely: nephropathy, retinopathy, cardiomyopathy, neuropathy and wound ulceration. In 2010, 11% of EU adult deaths (634,000) were caused by diabetic complications. The foot ulcer is a leading cause of hospital admissions for people with diabetes in the EU and is a major morbidity associated with diabetes. Diabetic foot ulcers (DFU) are estimated to occur in 15% of all patients with diabetes and precede 84% of all diabetes-related lower-leg amputations. As part of the project, academic and clinical research teams in Galway, Berlin, Belfast, Munich and Porto have been testing the Orbsen Therapeutics proprietary cell product (called Cyndacel-M ™) against the current standard cell therapy. The results have been collated and analysed and an independent panel at the Steno Diabetes Centre in Copenhagen, decided to use Cyndacel-M ™ for a clinical trial in patients with diabetic ulcers, in preference to the current cell technology. The clinical study will combine Orbsen’s Cyndacel-M ™ with an existing wound therapy called Excellagen, an FDA-cleared collagen treatment developed by US-based Cardium Therapeutics Inc. (Trading Symbol: CRXM). This transatlantic collaboration between Orsben and Cardium represents an exciting development that brings Cardium’s significant commercial expertise in the wound healing market to the REDDSTAR project. Professor Timothy O’Brien, Dean of Medicine and Director of REMEDI at NUI Galway said, “I have been very impressed by the experimental rigour applied by all the project partners. It was important to obtain independent verification of the efficacy of the therapy and that is what the EU funding and design of REDDSTAR allowed.” Orbsen CEO Brian Molloy said, “We are absolutely delighted with this decision. This is a very significant moment in the development of Orbsen Therapeutics. We have spent the past 3 years developing and validating our therapy. Advancing to a clinical trial is a major milestone for the company – particularly in a condition as prevalent as diabetic wound ulceration, which is so poorly served by existing treatment options at the moment.” The REDDSTAR project was originally conceived by Dr Steve Elliman, Head of Research and Development at Orbsen Therapeutics, and it is co-ordinated by Professor Timothy O’Brien at NUI Galway. The first phase of the project studied the use of stromal cells as a treatment for six major complications of diabetes namely Nephropathy, Neuropathy, Ulcers, Retinopathy, Cardiomyopathy and impaired bone healing. Each of the research teams presented their results at a plenary meeting in Paris on April 22 and these results were reviewed by an independent panel from the Steno Diabetes centre in Copenhagen. Dr. Steve Elliman, Orbsen Therapeutics commented, “The REDDSTAR teams presented very promising data from the six models of diabetic complications. In each case the teams compared the performance of our Cyndacel-M ™ therapy with the existing Plastic Adherent (PA) MSC product. We are delighted to see that Cyndacel was equivalent or better in all the complications. Our therapy represents a significant advance in terms of purity of the cell therapy and we expect this improved purity to correlate with improved clinical safety efficacy. Whilst diabetic wound ulceration has been selected for this trial, I expect that the Cyndacel will be advanced into other REDDSTAR-derived clinical trials over the coming years.” Orbsen has become one of Ireland’s most successful companies at securing EU FP7 funding over recent years. REDDSTAR is one of 5 programmes that they have secured – the others being PURSTEM (completed), DeCIDE (ongoing) and the recently announced MERLIN and VISICORT projects which include clinical trials of Cyndacel in auto-immune disease of the liver and cornea transplant rejection respectively. Brian Molloy added, “Our mission is to join Europe’s leading Cell Therapy companies in developing effective new medicines for disease with unmet need. In doing so we hope we can position Ireland and NUI Galway in particular as a European hub for cell therapy development. Developing new therapies is a slow process but we have made remarkable progress over the past three years. Mr Molloy continued, “The symbiotic relationship that we have developed with NUI Galway (who are shareholders in Orbsen) has been a key factor in our development as a company. We are based on campus which enables us to gain access to world class researchers and facilities. In return, we have been able to employ NUI Galway graduates, supervise NUI Galway students and attract significant amounts of research funding into the University. The relationship works very well for both parties and as we move into the clinical phase of our development we expect that relationship to continue as a “win-win” for both parties.” Orbsen Therapeutics Ltd. is a privately-held company founded in 2006 as a spin-out from Ireland’s Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) in NUI Galway. As part of the PurStem EU FP7 program, Orbsen developed proprietary technologies that enable the prospective purification of highly defined and therapeutic (stromal) cells from several human tissues, including bone marrow, adipose tissue and umbilical cord. The company has developed a unique method of isolating therapeutic stromal cells from human tissue at class-leading levels of purity. The Orbsen Therapeutics cell therapy product is unique in that it has been designed to meet future EU regulations regarding cell-based medicines. Orbsen’s proprietary Cyndacel-M ™ is being developed for several diseases, including inflammatory disease of the lungs and liver, diabetes, cardiovascular disorders, joint disease, kidney injury, organ graft rejection and wound repair. The novel aspects of Orbsen’s technology place it at the leading edge of research, development and regulatory compliance of adult mesenchymal stromal cell therapies. Cyndacel-M ™ can be purified from a single human donor, expanded and frozen to generate many doses of high-margin, allogeneic (“off-the-shelf”) therapeutic products for conditions with unmet need.
NUI Galway to Celebrate 50 Years of Biochemistry
Monday, 12 May 2014
Distinguished alumni from the USA, Australia and Ireland will speak at anniversary symposium to represent the history of Biochemistry at NUI Galway and the influence of the University on their scientific careers NUI Galway will host an Anniversary Symposium on Thursday 10th July to mark 50 years of Biochemistry within the University. The Department of Biochemistry was founded in 1963 by Professor Colm Ó hEocha who subsequently went on to become President of NUI Galway. Professor Patrick Fottrell, his successor as Professor of Biochemistry, also served as President of NUI Galway and is former Chairman of the Board of Science Foundation Ireland. A variety of distinguished alumni from the USA, Australia and Ireland will speak at the symposium to represent the history of Biochemistry at NUI Galway and the influence of the University on their scientific careers. These presentations will represent the breadth of rich contributions made across five decades of research and teaching. Past graduates of Biochemistry, Biotechnology and Biomedical Science along with current staff and researchers at NUI Galway are warmly invited to participate in the symposium. In addition to the talks, attendees will also be able to enjoy a tour of the current Biochemistry facilities in the main Arts and Sciences Building on campus, along with a tour of the new Biochemistry laboratories in the NUI Galway Bioscience Research Building in Dangan, which was opened in February by An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny. The festivities will conclude with a Gala Dinner at the Ardilaun Hotel in the evening. The current discipline of Biochemistry in the School of Natural Sciences includes 17 academic staff members and over 70 researchers. It maintains the tradition of innovation established by its founders with a highly active research programme funded by significant grants from national and international sources. The Biochemistry research programme graduates a number of postgraduate students with PhD degrees each year, as well as students with an MSc in Cancer Research. At the same time Biochemistry delivers courses covering areas such as protein biochemistry, gene technology and molecular genetics, cancer biology, and human nutrition, to over 400 undergraduate students each year. Over 70 students will complete undergraduate degrees in Biochemistry, Biotechnology or Biomedical Science this year. The one-day Symposium will take place on July 10 from 9am to 5.30pm and will feature a morning session of talks, lunch, an afternoon session of talks, a tour of the Biochemistry and the new Bioscience Research Building, followed by a Gala Dinner at the Ardilaun Hotel at 8pm. It promises to be an exciting event on the University calendar this summer and a great opportunity for alumni to reunite with old friends and colleagues. For registration and further details visit http://nuigalwaybiochemistry50.ie
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