Niall Byrne



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Personal profile

Research Interests

Niall graduated from the University of Ulster, Northern Ireland with a First Class Honours in Biomedical Science (with Diploma in Professional Practice) in 2009. He subsequently completed his PhD at the University of Ulster in 2014 in the laboratory of Prof Stephanie McKeown and Dr Jenny Worthington, investigating the role of the tumour microenvironment in the treatment response of prostate tumours. During the course of his PhD Niall developed a keen interest in intravital imaging techniques and the role of tumour hypoxia in malignant progression.

In September 2014 Niall relocated to Sydney, Australia to continue his research interests in prostate cancer, joining the laboratory of Prof Peter Croucher and Prof Mike Rogers in the Bone Biology Division at the world-renowned Garvan Institute of Medical Research. During this time he worked as part of the multi-institutional ProMis program, investigating the role of the bone microenvionment in controlling the fate of dormant tumour cells in prostate cancer bone metastasis; utilising single cell technologies and intravital imaging techniques.

Niall returned to the UK in September 2019 to take up a research fellow position in the laboratory of Dr Jonathan Coulter in the School of Pharmacy at Queens University Belfast. Furthering his research interests in prostate cancer, he is currently investigating nanotherapeutics, specifically functionalised gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) for the treatment of prostate cancer.


Prostate cancer
Functionalised gold nanoparticles
Bone metastasis
Bone biology
Molecular biology



PhD, University of Ulster – Northern Ireland
BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science with DPP (First Class), University of Ulster – Northern Ireland


May 2017: CABS International Conference, Young Investigator Travel Award
Aug 2016: St Vincent’s Precinct Postdoc Symposium: Runner-up poster prize winner
Jan 2012: Cancer Translational Research Group Young Investigator Travel Award
Dec 2011: CTRG Annual Retreat 2011: 1st prize for poster presentation
Nov 2010: Biochemistry society annual meeting: Runner-up poster prize winner

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Research Output

Exploiting Current Understanding of Hypoxia Mediated Tumour Progression for Nanotherapeutic Development

Feng, J., Byrne, N. M., Al Jamal, W. & Coulter, J. A., 11 Dec 2019, In : Cancers. 11, 12, 25 p., 1989.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Open Access
  • 1 Citation (Scopus)
    33 Downloads (Pure)

    Tumor Cell Dormancy and Reactivation in Bone: Skeletal Biology and Therapeutic Opportunities

    Byrne, N. M., Summers, M. A. & McDonald, M. M., Mar 2019, In : JBMR plus. 3, 3, 8 p., e10125.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

    Open Access
  • 51 Downloads (Pure)

    Targeting Hypoxic Prostate Tumors Using the Novel Hypoxia-Activated Prodrug OCT1002 Inhibits Expression of Genes Associated with Malignant Progression

    Nesbitt, H., Byrne, N. M., Williams, S. N., Ming, L., Worthington, J., Errington, R. J., Patterson, L. H., Smith, P. J., McKeown, S. R. & McKenna, D. J., 01 Apr 2017, In : Clinical Cancer Research. 23, 7, p. 1797-1808 12 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 10 Citations (Scopus)

    Androgen deprivation in LNCaP prostate tumour xenografts induces vascular changes and hypoxic stress, resulting in promotion of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition

    Byrne, N. M., Nesbitt, H., Ming, L., McKeown, S. R., Worthington, J. & McKenna, D., 08 Mar 2016, In : British Journal of Cancer. 114, 6, p. 659-68 10 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 22 Citations (Scopus)

    Nitric Oxide Up-Regulates RUNX2 in LNCaP Prostate Tumours: Implications for Tumour Growth In Vitro and In Vivo

    Nesbitt, H., Browne, G., O'Donovan, K. M., Byrne, N. M., Worthington, J., McKeown, S. R. & McKenna, D., 22 Oct 2015, In : Journal of Cellular Physiology. 231, 2, p. 473-82 10 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 12 Citations (Scopus)