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    Interests

    My interests are in translational research in acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) with the aim of improving diagnosis, prognosis and prediction of therapeutic responses. 

    Research Statement

    The molecular and cytogenetic abnormalities in Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML) and Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) are increasingly well defined and these are being implicated in stratification for diagnosis and prognosis.

    One research theme involves the integrated analysis of the molecular consequences of epigenetic therapies such as DNA methyltransferase inhibitors or histone deacetylase inhibitors tgene expression.   These analyses will guide further studies into developing rational epigenetic sensitised therapeutic combinations. 

    In addition, we have a series of studies being undertaken to identify repurposed therapies to target different sub-groups of adult and paediatric AML.  

    Alongside these, are studies introducing clinically relevant mutations using the CRISPR-Cas mechanism to produce isogenic cell lines to further understand the molecular disruption caused by the mutation.  Our recent direction of research has involved investigating the role of DNA repair in sub-cohorts of MDS and AML.

    Several studies are being undertaken in collaboration with previous members of the EU funded COST Action on translating genomic and epigenetic studies of MDS and AML (EuGESMA) with partners in 22 countries including Spain,  Denmark, Italy, Germany, Serbia and Finland.

    Current funding is from the Leukaemia & Lymphoma NI (LLNI), Cancer Research UK, Myeloma UK, Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group (CCLG)/Little Princess Trust, Department of Education and Learning (DEL) and with recent funding from Bloodwise, Queen's University Belfast, Cancer Research UK, and the R&D Division of the NI HSC.   The laboratory is also an associated member of the IMI2 funded HARMONY project.

    Teaching

    Acting Deputy Director:  Centre for Biomedical Science Education

    Associate Director for Undergraduate Teaching (CCRCB)

    Coordinator for the CCRCB Summer School Programme

    Module coordinator for Molecular Markers of Disease (BMS3104)

    Module coordinator for Pathobiology (BMS2023) and Cellular & Molecular Haematology (BMS3009)

    Teaching contributions to BMS2023, BMS 2106, BMS3009, BMS3104

    Module coordinator for SCM81821 and SCM7046 within both the MSc in Computational Biology and Bioinformatics and the MSc in Molecular Pathology

    Achievements and Distinctions

    Chair of the Northern Ireland council of the Royal College of Pathologists (2016-2019)

    Member of the Manx Health and Bioscience Advisory Board (2017-2019)

    REF Advisor for the School of Health Sciences, Liverpool Hope University (2016-2018)

    Willingness to take PhD. students

    Yes

    PhD projects

    There are opportunities to investigate molecular mechanisms in myeloid blood cancers including epigenetic alterations, DNA repair deficiency, altered signal pathways to identify therapeutic targets for novel agents or repurposed drugs using drug screens and/or NGS technologies to improve patient outcomes.

    Frequent Journals

    • British Journal of Haematology

      ISSNs: 0007-1048, 1365-2141

      Additional searchable ISSN (Electronic): 1365-2141

      WILEY-BLACKWELL PUBLISHING, INC

      Scopus rating (2017): CiteScore 3.43 SJR 2.036 SNIP 1.389

      Journal

    • Blood

      ISSNs: 0006-4971, 1528-0020

      Additional searchable ISSN (Electronic): 1528-0020

      AMER SOC HEMATOLOGY

      Scopus rating (2017): CiteScore 7.24 SJR 6.434 SNIP 2.69

      Journal

    • Leukemia

      ISSNs: 0887-6924, 1476-5551

      Additional searchable ISSN (Electronic): 1476-5551

      NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP

      Scopus rating (2017): CiteScore 6.45 SJR 5.131 SNIP 2.085

      Journal

    • Oncotarget

      ISSNs: 1949-2553

      Impact Journals

      Scopus rating (2017): CiteScore 4.65 SJR 1.942 SNIP 1.039

      Journal

    • Haematologica

      ISSNs: 0390-6078, 1592-8721

      Additional searchable ISSN (Electronic): 1592-8721

      FERRATA STORTI FOUNDATION

      Scopus rating (2017): CiteScore 4.28 SJR 3.063 SNIP 1.658

      Journal

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    Contribution to conference papers, events and activities

    ID: 46280