Molecular & Computational Biology PhD Symposium

21st & 22nd November 2019, Conway Institute, University College Dublin

Keynote Speakers

The 2019 keynote speakers are:

Prof. Markus Aebi
ETH Zurich

Our laboratory is interested in various aspects of glycobiology in prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms. We use microbial model systems to study mechanistic and functional aspects of glycans.
Having contributed to the dissection of the eukaryotic pathway of N-linked protein glycosylation in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the laboratory continues to work on the molecular mechanism of N-linked protein glycosylation in bacterial (classical and non-classical) and eukaryotic cells as well as the processing of N-linked glycans in the ER and the Golgi.
All prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells are coated with glycans, many of them covalently linked to proteins or lipids. Glycans therefore play a crucial role in the interaction between cells and their environment. In our laboratory, we study the role of glycans and glycan-binding proteins (lectins) in the interaction of fungi with competitors, predators and parasites including microbes and animals.

Dr. Emma Davenport
Wellcome Sanger Institute

Emma Davenport is a Group Leader at the Wellcome Sanger Institute, Cambridge. Her group focuses on how genetics contributes to patient-to-patient variation in disease severity and response to treatment. In particular, they use gene expression data to identify subgroup specific signatures and to map in vivo expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL) interactions.
Emma conducted her postdoctoral research in Professor Soumya Raychaudhuri’s lab at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School and the Broad Institute. There she developed a statistical framework to investigate how the administration of a drug alters the relationship between genomic variation and gene expression (drug eQTL interactions).
Emma completed her PhD research under the supervision of Professor Julian Knight at the University of Oxford. She investigated the genetic determinants of variation in the human response to common and rare infection, focusing on sepsis and common variable immunodeficiency disorders. A key finding was a gene expression signature stratifying patients into two distinct sepsis response signature (SRS) groups. The SRS1 group identifies individuals with an immunosuppressed phenotype and was associated with higher mortality.

Dr. Arthur Gilly
Institute of Translational Genomics at the Helmholtz Centre, Munich

I studied mechanical engineering before switching to applied mathematics and computer science. I first worked in financial services before moving over to science and plant genetics. I’ve worked as a Principal Bioinformatician for 5 years in Eleftheria Zeggini’s group at the Wellcome Sanger Institute, while studying for my PhD. Recently, I moved to Germany at the Helmholtz Centre in Munich, where I work as Head of Analytics in Eleftheria’s newly-established Institute of Translational Genomics.

Dr. Quincey Justman
Cell Systems, Editor-in-Chief

Quincey obtained her B.A. In Biology from Reed College and her Ph.D. In Biophysics from the University of California, San Francisco, where she studied cell-fate decisions with Kevan Shokat. She comes to Cell Systems from a post-doctoral fellowship with Andrew Murray (Harvard), where she studied how metabolism controls the cell cycle.

Dr. Tamás Korcsmáros
Earlham Institute and in the Institute of Food Research (UK)

Tamás Korcsmáros is a joint Group Leader at the Earlham Institute and the Quadram Institute in Norwich, UK. For 15 years, he has been working in the field of intra- and intercellular signalling networks and studying the regulation of autophagy, a conserved cellular degradation process relevant in stress response and homeostasis. 
Tamás started his research career as a high school student in a biochemistry lab. After four years of experimental research work on diabetes and redox biology, he gained his MSc at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, Hungary. Then, as a PhD student, he developed a signalling network database, SignaLink, which fills a vital niche in the landscape of bioinformatics tools. In Budapest, he established and led the “NetBiol” Network Biology group, which has developed novel databases and web-services to meet key scientific community needs. 
In March 2014, Tamás won a unique 5-years fellowship to move to Norwich and establish a multi-disciplinary group that combines computational and experimental approaches to predict, analyse and validate host-microbe interactions in the gut. The main interest of the group is related to the regulation of autophagy by microbes and upon disease conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and cancer. Tamás has an extensive track record of research studying signalling pathways and networks, which has resulted in a total of 51 publications (6 first author; 19 last author) in top-level peer-reviewed journals, including one Nature Method paper and cover story.
Tamás played a major role in the organisation of eight international conferences (each with more than 1000 participants), and as a main organiser established the Interdisciplinary Signaling Workshop, which was organised twice already in 2014 and 2017. He also co-founded three network analysis companies and has coordinated three innovation grant programs. Since 2001, Tamás has been participating as a volunteer in Hungarian and international talent support organisations. He is currently the Chairman of the Research Student Foundation supporting 5000 high-school research students. 

Prof. Ola Söderberg
Uppsala University

Ola Söderberg has a background as a chemist (BSc 1991) at Uppsala University, where he 1997 got his PhD at the Department of Pathology, “Regulation of Growth, Differentiation and Survival of B-Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Cells”. After post-doc periods at IPATIMUP (Porto, Portugal) and Linköping University (Sweden) he returned to Uppsala in 2001. In 2007 he got appointed as Associate Professor and in 2013 he got a position as Senior Lecturer at Uppsala University. 2016 he became Professor in Molecular Proteomics. In 2017 he moved to the department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences at Uppsala University, where he is Professor in Pharmaceutical Cell Biology. His research is mainly focused on development of new methods for visualization of protein activity in single cells. He is author of more than 90 scientific papers and inventor of 5 patents.