Ahearne:Lab Members

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Current lab members

Mark Ahearne: Senior Research Fellow and Principle Investigator [1]

Mark Ahearne
Mark Ahearne

Mark received a BEng. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Limerick in 2001, a MSc. in Cell and Tissue Engineering from Keele University (United Kingdom) in 2003 and a PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Keele University in 2007. His PhD research focused on the development of a novel spherical indentation system to characterise the mechanical behaviour of cell seeded hydrogels. He subsequently worked as a post-doctoral research associate for three years at Keele University where he developed an in vitro corneal wound healing model for pharmaceutical screening, in addition to working on other projects. Mark joined the Trinity Centre for Bioengineering (TCBE) as a post-doctoral research fellow in October 2010 to primarily work on developing a growth factor delivery scaffold for articular cartilage repair. In June 2012 he commenced work as a research fellow and principle investigator in TCBE in the field of corneal tissue engineering and cornea repair after obtaining an Starting Investigator Research Grant from Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) and the Marie-Curie COFUND. More recently, in December 2014 he was successful in obtaining an ERC starting investigator research grant to develop a cell based therapy for corneal regeneration. The primary goal of his research is to investigate and develop novel stem cell, tissue engineering and biomaterial based approaches to corneal repair and regeneration.

Amy Lynch: PhD candidate [2]

Amy joined the Trinity Centre for Bioengineering as a PhD student in July 2012. She received a BSc (Biology) from NUI, Maynooth and an MSc (Regenerative Medicine) from NUI, Galway. Her research will focus on engineering corneal tissue in vitro by culturing stem cells in three-dimensional scaffold. This project is investigating the potential of adipose-derived stem cells (ADSC) to differentiate into a subset of corneal cells called keratocytes. The biochemical factors that induce a keratocyte phenotype in ADSC will be examined as well as the effect of environmental factors upon ADSC differentiation. In addition, different methods of fabricating biomimetic scaffolds will be assessed with the objective of developing functional corneal tissue that could act as an alternative to transplantation of donor cornea.

Aron Coyle: MAI candidate

Development of a novel hydrogel for corneal tissue engineering

Sepideh Zamani: MAI candidate

Development of a nanofiber scaffold for corneal tissue engineering

Philip Vincent Byrne: MAI candidate

Mechanical and structural characterization of cornea

Previous lab members

James Mulhern: MSc complete

James worked on the development of a novel hydrogel based scaffold. This work examined the feasibility of combining electrospun nanofibers with a biomimetic hydrogel for cornea regeneration.

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