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Meet our Featured Conway Fellows

Professor B. Therese Kinsella

Our group is mainly focussed on delienation of the mechanisms of signalling and function by the cyclooxygenase-derived prostanoids, prostacyclin and thromboxane, in the regulation of vascular haemostasis.  Moreover, we are investigating their roles in contributing to normal and disease processes throughout the vasculature as well as studying their roles in the renal and pulmonary systems and in regulating neoplastic growth.  We are using multidisciplinary approaches including elucidation of the mechanisms of signalling by prostacyclin and thromboxane by their cognate receptors, referred to as the IP and TP, respectively; consideration of the structure:function properties of those receptors; use of proteomic approaches to identify novel interacting proteins and/or signalling pathways-regulated by the IP and TP receptors; determination of the transcription factors regulating the expression of the IP and TP genes and design & development of novel antagonists that target the TPα and TPβ isoforms of the human TP (thromboxane receptor). Read more>>

Dr Breandan Kennedy

Currently, we are focusing on the discovery and development of small molecule drugs that inhibit angiogenesis/neovascularisation.  Using random and targeted chemical screens in transgenic zebrafish larvae we identify “drug hits” that inhibit developmental angiogenesis.  Validated hits are then forwarded to in vitro assays of angiogenesis in human endothelial cells, and to mouse models of pathological ocular neovascularisation and xenograft cancer models.  Utlimatley, the goal is to identify novel therapeutics for forms of human blindness and cancer. Read more>>

Dr Tara McMorrow

Our group focuses on the study of renal disease, which includes renal vascular disease, with emphasis on mechanisms of initiation and progression. Renal disease is a growing problem worldwide with a 10% annual increase in patients developing chronic kidney disease (CKD). We are currently analysing the mechanisms of renal disease progression, including transcriptomic and proteomic profiles of in vitro and in vivo models of kidney disease with the aim of identifying novel early biomarkers and potential therapeutic targets and strategies. We also focus on ‘Innovative Toxicity Testing for the 21st Century’ with an emphasis in renal toxicogenomics for carcinogens and other chemicals. We collaborate with numerous experimental and clinical collaborators in Ireland and Europe. Read more>> Personal Profile|Laboratory Webpage

Dr Albert Smolenski

Our group focuses on the regulation and function of blood platelets. These cells mediate the final thrombotic events in myocardial infarction and stroke and they are likely to be involved in the development of atherosclerosis. We want to understand basic platelet functions to identify new targets for improved anti-thrombotic therapy. Read more>>

Professor Denis Shields

We focus on bioinformatics, with applications in two areas of vascular biology: The first objective is to find short bioactive peptide subsequences of platelet proteins that alter platelet function, giving us insights into cellular signalling and that potentially may provide the templates for therapeutic modulators of thrombosis (involved in heart attacks and stroke). The second is genetics of cardiovascular disease, applied to the ASCOT study, where we seek to understand the role of genetic variation in cardiovascular disease predisposition and outcomes.  We work closely with experimental and clinical collaborators at RCSI and UCD. Read more>> Personal profile | Laboratory webpage  

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