Thursday, 27 October 2016

Dr Manus Biggs, Lecturerer in Biomedical Engineering at NUI Galway was one of three Irish researchers to receive a newly launched BBSRC - Science Foundation Ireland joint research grant, with research funding of over 1 Million Euros awarded between NUI Galway and the University of Glasgow. The BBSRC and Science Foundation Ireland have entered an agreement to welcome, encourage and support research applications that cut across national boundaries involving collaborative teams led by researchers from the UK and Ireland. Dr Biggs will co-lead a research programme in conjunction with Prof. Matthew Dalby, which will focus on the development of nanobiomimetic electrically active scaffolds for bone regeneration, with an aim of producing rapid, large area bone grafts in vitro. Bone tissue regeneration remains an important challenge in the field of tissue engineering and sees a transplantation frequency second only to that of blood. Bone grafting is the current standard treatment; however, given the inherent limitations of this approach, bone tissue engineering and advanced biomaterials that mimic the structure and function of native tissues hold potential as alternative strategies to regeneration. Current studies in regenerative bone scaffolds suggest that further biomimicry is required before a complete solution to bone regeneration can be delivered. Furthermore, evidence is gathering apace on the importance of minute electrical and mechanical cues on cell differentiation and function, thus, new research must focus on understanding the cellular response to subtle electrical and mechanical cues and how these influence cell function and tissue regeneration. This Joint programme will focus on combining piezoelectric regenerative scaffolds with nano mechanical stimulation to promote osteospecific stem cell differentiation. Importantly, this project will further current understanding of the joint role or electromechanical stimulation on stem cell function.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Congratulations to Jack O’Meara who has just been announced as the Irish Regional Winner in The Undergraduate Awards 2016. The award was based on the work Jack carried out as part of his 4th year project in 2014/2015 and ranked him as the best Irish student in the category of Engineering and the Built Environment. The Undergraduate Awards is the world’s largest academic awards programme, identifying leading creative thinkers through their undergraduate coursework across all disciplines. Jack’s 4th year project developed both functionalised and non-functionalised poly (lactic-co-glycolic) acid (PLGA) scaffolds for the purpose of tendon repair. The project was supervised by Dr. Dimitrios Zeugolis. Jack will receive his award at the Undergraduate Awards Global Summit 2016, which takes place in Dublin in November.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Professor Peter McHugh was elected Science Secretary of the Royal Irish Academy at the Stated General Meeting of the RIA recently. The Royal Irish Academy is Ireland’s leading body of experts in the sciences and humanities. Founded in 1785 The Royal Irish Academy/Acadamh Ríoga na hÉireann is a publicly funded institution established for the promotion of Irish academic research. Professor Peter McHugh holds a BE in Mechanical Engineering from UCG (1987), and an MSc (1990) and PhD (1992) in Mechanics of Solids from Brown University, Providence, USA. He joined NUI Galway in 1991, where he is currently Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Head of Discipline of Biomedical Engineering, within the College of Engineering and Informatics. His research is focused on fundamental developments and applications of computational and experimental methods in biomechanics, tissue mechanics and medical implants and devices. He has taken a leadership role in the development of biomedical engineering in Ireland through high quality and prolific research and publication output, and undergraduate and graduate education programme generation. He has received numerous awards, including membership of the Royal Irish Academy (2011), the Silver Medal of the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland (Section of Bioengineering) in 2011, the Presidential Nominee Fellowship of Engineers Ireland in (2009), and the Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship (1995).