SVUH Neurology Group

Group Overview

The Neurology Department at St Vincent’s University Hospital is currently led by three full time consultant neurologists; Professor Niall Tubridy, Dr Christopher McGuigan and Dr Sean O’ Riordan. Professor Hutchinson continues to work in four clinics every week as well as being one of the driving forces behind our Multiple Sclerosis and Dystonia research.

The Neurology Research Group continues its work in a wide range of areas but especially in those of multiple sclerosis and movement disorders.

The research team includes; Dr Okka Kimmich, Dr Anna Molloy, Dr Laura Williams, Newman Fellow in Movement Disorders; Dr Karen O’Connell, Newman Fellow in MS Research; Post-Doctoral MS Research Fellow, Dr Jean Fletcher (based at TCD); MS Nurse Specialists Marguerite Duggan and Lisa Buckley, Parkinson’s Nurse Specialist Heather Kevilighan and Clinical Trials Research Nurse Sinead Jordan.

Centre Information

Location: St Vincent's University Hospital
Academic Lead: Prof Niall Tubridy


More Information

In November 2012 we began recruiting for our first investigator-led interventional clinical trial entitled: ‘Dose-related effects of vitamin D on immune responses in patients with Clinically Isolated Syndrome or early MS and healthy control participants. An exploratory double blinded placebo controlled study’ (2012CIS/VD/SVUH). The principal investigator of this study is Professor Michael Hutchinson. To date 26 participants have been screened. A second interventional trial involving MS participants, led by Dr Christopher McGuigan is due to commence in spring 2013.

Neuropsychological assessments of participants with MS, conducted over three years, are ongoing as part of a larger study on evoked potentials in MS. Neuropsychological assessments are being completed in collaboration with Sean O Donnchadha, Marie Claire O Brien, Dr Jessica Bramham and Dr Teresa Burke from the School of Psychology, UCD.

Research in dystonia in conjunction with Prof Richard Reilly and Dr Robert Whelan of the Department of Neural Engineering has been funded jointly by the HRB and Dystonia Ireland with a two-year grant. We have shown that the temporal discrimination threshold is a useful endophenotype in adult onset primary torsion dystonia (AOPTD) and this may have important implications for understanding the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying this disorder and ultimately its genetic basis.

Our research registrars and collaborators represented our department at several international and national neurology conferences throughout the year presenting our current data.

Prof Niall Tubridy
Associate Clinical Professor

Prof Michael Hutchinson
Newman Clinical Research Professor

Prof James Jones
Professor of Anatomy & Head of Subject

Dr Sean O'Riordan
Consultant Neurologist

Dr Chris McGuigan
Consultant Neurologist

Dr Karen O'Connell
Research Fellow in Neurology

Dr Anna Molloy
Newman Fellow

Dr Okka Kimmich
Newman Fellow

Dr Laura Williams
Newman Fellow

Ms Sinead Jordan
Research Nurse

Ms Heather Kevelighan
Parkinson's Nurse

Ms Lisa Buckley
MS Nurse

Ms Marguerite Duggan
MS Nurse

  • Dr Karen O’Connell, Newman Fellow
  • Dr Okka Kimmich, Newman Fellow
  • Dr Laura Williams, Newman Fellow
  • Dr Anna Molloy, Newman Fellow
  • Ms Sinead Jordan, Clinical Trials Nurse
  • Ms Malgorzata Dytko, MSc
  • Dr Babatunde Soetan, MCh
  • Mr Eric Lucking, PhD
  • Ms Fiona McDonald, PhD
  • Ms Deirdre Edge, PhD
  • Ms Judith Evers, PhD
  • Ms Catherine Redmond, PhD
  • Dr Liam Devane, MD
  • Dr Giovanni Stevanin, Hopital de Salpetriere
  • Prof Laurie Ozelius, Associate Prof, Bachmann
  • Strauss Prof, Mount Sinai School of Medicine
  • Dr Mark Edwards, Institute of Neurology London
  • Prof Caroline Sabin, University College London, HIV UPBEAT and HRB Bone 
  • Prof Juliet Compston, University of Cambridge, HIV UPBEAT
  • Prof Yvette Calderon, Jacobi medical Centre, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, the Bronx, New York, M-BRiHT 
  • Prof Peter Reiss, University of Amsterdam, RCTS Study
  • Prof Alan Landay, Rush University Medical Centre, Chicago HIV Immunology Study 
  • Prof Dermot Kenny, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Platelet Dysfunction in HIV
  • Dr Anton Pozniak, St Stephens AIDS Trust the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, London RCTS Study

A series of open-source e-learning videos, produced by Prof Niall Tubridy, Associate Clinical Professor at UCD and Consultant Neurologist at St Vincent’s University Hospital, in association with UCD Medical School and Clinics in Motion, has generated more than 75,000 views on the School’s YouTube channel since its introduction 6 months ago. The videos were produced with the cooperation of the neurology team at Vincent’s including neurologists, specialist nurses, physiotherapists and speech therapists.

The videos were conceived in an effort to tackle what Prof Tubridy describes as ‘neurophobia’ amongst medical students and young doctors.

Neurology is a complex subject and one that medical students, and indeed new doctors, find extremely challenging. The goal for us as educators is to find new, innovative ways to encourage understanding and engagement with the subject matter. I’m particularly interested in technology as a method through which we can remove the fear around learning neurology, while also promoting improved educational outcomes,” said Prof Tubridy.

Prof Tubridy and colleagues in the Department of Neurology at St. Vincent’s University Hospital have introduced a number of educational initiatives at UCD to help fourth and fifth year clinical students engage more effectively with the neurology curriculum.

For the last number of years  the Department of Neurology has held biannual, neurology-specific teaching weeks for clinical students. These mini-modules are offered in addition to the standard curriculum and provide students with an intense and fully immersive learning experience. These videos will now serve as a learning aid to these teaching weeks and will allow students to engage with the various topics in their own time or as a way to understand more completely the issues that emerge during the course of standard teaching,” said Prof Tubridy.

The series is free-to-use (creative commons, attribution), and has had a significant impact beyond the confines of the UCD campus. Students from more than 160 countries have viewed, shared and embedded videos from the series, which includes topics such as:

The most watched video from the series is entitled ‘Parkinson’s Disease – examining the patient’, which has clocked up just under 20,000 views.

Feedback from students has been very positive and Prof Tubridy is encouraging those who find the videos useful to leave comments as to how they helped and how such a series might be developed in the future. Feedback included the following comments:

  • This is a fantastic video. I'm taking my undergraduate finals tomorrow and this has helped for some last minute revision!
  • Your video series is excellent. Thank you!
  • Thank you for your amazing neurology history and examination videos - I am an M3 in the United States and your lectures are nothing but strings of pearls. Thank you UCD for putting these lectures online and to all the patients in your clinics who made these videos possible. Thank you again!
  • There seem to be a number of different causes of Nystagmus. This doctor directly addresses where in the brain this patient's Nystagmus originates. Excellent video.
  • A fantastic set of teaching aids. Thank you!         

Post-production of the series was managed by Mr Adam Tattersall, Educational Technologist at UCD School of Medicine and medical Science.