Research Day 2017 Award WinnersProfessor Catherine Green, the event’s Academic Coordinator, hosted the Research Day Awards Ceremony which recognised winners across fourteen categories. Earlier in the afternoon, the 2016 Innovation Awards were introduced by Dr Aoife Gallagher, Head of Innovation, RCSI and presented to the eleven winners by Professor Ray Stallings, Director of Research and Innovation, RCSI.

The main ceremony began with the RCSI Author Citations Prizes with Dr Mark McCormack, Department of Molecular & Cellular Therapeutics, taking home the prize in two categories – the 2011 Most Highly Cited RCSI Senior Authored Paper and the 2011-2015 Most Highly Cited RCSI Senior Authored Paper with International Collaboration – for his paper entitled “HLA-A*3101 and carbamazepine-induced hypersensitivity reactions in Europeans” which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The prize for the 2011-2015 Most Highly Cited RCSI Senior Authored Paper with Industry Collaboration went to Dr Regien Biesma, Department of Epidemiology & Public Health Medicine, for her paper entitled  “Early life opportunities for prevention of diabetes in low and middle income countries” which was published in BMC Public Health. The prize for the most highly downloaded item from the RCSI Repository in 2016 went to Dr Ritesh Pabari, School of Pharmacy for the paper entitled “Physical and structural stability of the monoclonal antibody, trastuzumab (Herceptin®), intravenous solutions”.

The recipient of this year’s Health Professions Education Award was Dr Anusha Kumar, RCSI, Connolly Hospital Blanchardstown. This award from the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences acknowledges the importance of research and development in RCSI’s educational programme.

Dr Cathy Wyse in Dr Annie Curtis’s group, Molecular and Cellular Therapeutics, was presented a prize for the front cover illustration of the RCSI Research Day abstract book, for a striking image of glial cells at the junction between the brain and pituitary gland.

The Mr Kamal Sayed Prize in Neurosurgery medal winner was Mr Ayamn Khalil. The medal, which is generously supported by Dr Yacoob Kadwa, Medicine, Class of 1965, is awarded to a neurosurgery trainee in recognition of outstanding work and excellence in the field of neurosurgery. This is a prestigious award of RCSI and is run in conjunction with the Irish Institute of Clinical Neuroscience. The prize pays special tribute to the memory of Mr Kamal Sayed, a graduate of RCSI (Medicine, Class of 1960). The award was presented by Mr Sayed’s daughters Dr Jacintha More-O’Ferrall (Medicine, Class of 1990) and Dr Safia Sayed (Medicine, Class of 1994) on behalf of the family including RCSI Council Member, Dr. Camilla Carroll (FRCSI, Medicine, Class of 1985).

The poster prizes were awarded to medical student Grace Madigan (Undergraduate category); Oliver J McElvaney, Department of Medicine (Postgraduate Scholars – first year category); Mariana Alves, Physiology & Medical Physics (Postgraduate Scholars – 2nd year or later); and Dr Natalia Lajczak, Molecular Medicine (Early Career Investigators).

Medical student Jack Donohue was awarded the Dr Harry O’Flanagan Prize for Excellence in Undergraduate Research for the best undergraduate oral presentation for a project carried out with the Department of Molecular & Cellular Therapeutics as part of the RCSI Research Summer School entitled “Sanger Confirmation of Suspected Epilepsy-Related Pathogenic Variants Identified Through Next-Generation Sequencing”. This medal award was created by Dr. Yacoob Kadwa, RCSI graduate (Class of 1965) to pay special tribute to the memory of Dr. Harry O’Flanagan, former Registrar of the RCSI.

The prize for the best postgraduate oral presentation, sponsored by Bio-Sciences Limited, was presented to Tony McHale, PhD student at the School of Pharmacy, Molecular and Cellular Therapeutics and the Irish Centre for Vascular Biology, RCSI for his talk on the topic of “First in Class Potential Novel Drug for the Treatment of Sepsis Caused by Urinary Tract Infections”.

The last award of the day, The Barnes Medal, was awarded to Dr Rosanne Raftery, Tissue Engineering Group, Department of Anatomy and School of Pharmcy, for the best oral presentation by an Early Career Investigator for her research on “Translating the Fundamental Role of Osteogenic-Angiogenic Coupling in Bone Formation: Highly Efficient Combinatorial Gene-Activated Scaffolds Accelerate Bone Regeneration in Critical-sized Defects”. This medal pays tribute to Dr Joe Barnes, Professor Emeritus of Tropical Medicine in RCSI and was presented by his son Mr. Matthew Barnes.

Earlier in the afternoon, as part of 2016 Innovation Awards, the winners of the Invention Disclosure Awards were unveiled as: Dr Hasim Ibrahim, Pharmaceutical & Medicinal Chemistry; Dr Garrett Greene, Psychology; Dr Siobhan Hogan, Microbiology; David Walsh, Department of Anatomy; Robert Murphy, Pharmaceutical & Medicinal Chemistry; Dr Joanne Ramsey, School of Pharmacy; Rachel Gaul, School of Pharmacy; and Dr Jane English, Psychiatry.

Professor Celine Marmion, Associate Professor of Chemistry at RCSI, was announced as the winner of the Commercialisation Award in recognition of her work on the development of cancer therapeutics and their commercialisation. Professor Richard Costello, Associate Professor of Medicine at RCSI, received the Industry Engagement Award for collaboration with industry to further the development of his innovations in respiratory devices; and Professor Zena Moore, Head of the RCSI School of Nursing and Midwifery, was recognised as winner of the Clinician Award for her engagement with a number of companies in the area of pressure ulcer prevention.

Congratulations to all the winners and Coordinators of Research Day 2017 Professor Catherine Greene, Dr Christopher Byrne and Cathy O’Byrne, on the success of Research Day 2017.