I read for a BSc degree (1985) and a PhD (1989) degree in Biochemistry at University College Dublin (UCD) under Prof. Stephen Mayhew investigating structure-function relationships in flavodoxins (small flavoproteins involved in a number of low potential oxidation-reduction reactions such as nitrogen fixation, sulphate reduction, etc.) before working with Dr John Dalton at Dublin City University looking at how malarial parasites bind to red blood cells.
Following this work, I moved onto the University of Manchester to work on a Sanofi-Aventis funded project developing small molecule inhibitors of integrins (proteins that play an essential function in cell adhesion) in Prof. Martin Humphries' laboratory before being appointed Lecturer in Biochemistry at the University of Westminster in 2000. In addition, I have also worked for periods at both the University of Calgary and at the University of Notre Dame.
I have nearly 20 years experience teaching in Higher Education and currently I teach on a number of modules from Level 4 through to Level 7 (MSc level), primarily focused on biochemistry, chemistry and bioinformatics. This involves lectures, tutorials and practical classes.
I hold a Postgraduate Certificate Higher Education (Pg. Cert. HE) and am also a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
Teaching Responsibilities: Module Leader for Molecular Bioinformatics (MSc) and Biochemistry (BSc).
Teaching areas: Biochemistry, Bioinformatics, Chemistry & Cell Biology.
As well as my formal teaching duties, I have a number of other teaching-related responsibilities both within and without the University as detailed below:
- University Validation Panel Chair
- External Examiner for the MSc in Biotechnology, University of Bedfordshire.
- External Examiner for MSc in Analytical Chemistry and Analytical Biosciences at Birkbeck College, University of London.
Current research interests include: computational methods for protein structure prediction; in silico molecular modelling of ligand binding; lectin-carbohydrate interactions; autophagy in Trichomonas vaginalis; role of melanocortin peptides in osteoarthritis.
Research Group: Cell Communication. Research students: Hans Heindl. Membership of professional bodies: Member of the Biochemical Society.