Lab People (current affiliations are also listed, where known).

We are always looking for leading-edge post-docs and graduate students to join our team.  Feel free to get in contact using the contact form at the bottom of this page.


Dr. Carla Cummins

Carla worked on a Science Foundation Ireland project that aimed to understand the evolution of prokaryotic metabolism, in particular, the influence of horizontal gene transfer on metabolism. Carla is a graduate of the NUI Maynooth Genetics and Bioinformatics degree programme and now works at The Sanger Institute.


Dr. Leanne Haggerty

Leanne was funded by Science Foundation Ireland on a four-year PhD project to explore the species boundaries in bacteria. Leanne used network mathematics in order to understand the homology linkages between different bacterial species.


Dr. Aoife Doherty

Aoife was funded by the Irish Research Council for Science Engineering and Technology to carry out a PhD on the timing of gene duplication and loss events among vertebrates. Aoife graduated from the NUI Maynooth biology programme in 2009. Aoife now works in Liverpool.


Dr. Sinead Hamilton

Sinead was funded by the Irish Research Council for Science Engineering and Technology to carry out a PhD on the evolutionary trade-offs that occur during evolution. Sinead is a graduate of the BSc in biology programme of NUI Maynooth.


Dr. Anthony Doran

Anthony was funded by a Walsh Fellowship from Teagasc. He was jointly-supervised by Dr. Chris Creevey at Teagasc and worked on the development of methods for quickly identifying favourable traits in cattle.


Dr. David Alvarez-PonceDavid Alvarez

David joined the group in 2010 following the completion of his PhD in Barcelona on the evolution of insulin networks in animals. David was funded on a Science Foundation Ireland Research Frontiers Project to investigate the evolution of prokaryote genomes.


Brian Daly

Brian worked on a Higher Education Authority (H.E.A.) Programme for Research in Third Level Institutes (PRTLI Cycle IV) project to integrate GRID technologies, high performance computing technologies and bioinformatics in Ireland.


Dr. Angela McCannangela

Angela McCann is a graduate of the Genetics and Bioinformatics degree course at NUI Maynooth. Angela worked at the Bioinformatics Core at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland in the summer of 2004. She graduated in 2005 and subsequently completed a PhD that examined the way in which genomes might fuse and to determine if these events have occurred in the past. Angela was funded by Science Foundation Ireland.


Dr. Fergal Martin fergal

Fergal Martin is a graduate of the NUI Maynooth Genetics and Bioinformatics degree programme. He has worked as a bioinformaticist during the summer holidays and was funded by The Wellcome Trust and The Health Research Board. Fergal was the recipient of an EMBARK scholarship and was funded by the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology. Fergal worked on methods of identifying how biochemical pathways were put together.


Dr. Victoria Svintivicky

Vicky worked on methods for the detection of reassortment and recombination. These included maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference approaches. Vicky is formerly a student of the NUI Maynooth BSc degree in Genetics and Bioinformatics and also spent a summer working at Cold Spring Harbor in New York.


Samantha Chui-Sang Lee

Sam worked on the 2009 Science Foundation Ireland-funded UREKA summer programme where she developed methods for assessing whether the position of a protein on a bacterial metabolic network influenced its expression pattern. Sam is a student at Dublin City University in the Genetics and Cell Biology BSc degree course.


Dr. Graham Hughes

Graham was funded by the Science Foundation Ireland UREKA programme. He worked on the development of methods to correctly identify orthologous genes in prokaryotic genomes using homology information and gene order data


Giorgio Corti

Giorgio was on a short visit from Italy and he worked on assessing the congruence of phylogenetic relationships inferred by different copies of ribosomal RNA genes in prokaryotes.


Dr. Davide Pisani

Davide Pisani obtained his PhD from the University of Bristol in the UK, working on theoretical phylogenetics as well as developing a genus-level phylogenetic supertree of all the dinosaurs. He subsequently worked as a post-doc at the NASA astrobiology Institute at Penn State university and then spent a short while working at The Natural History Museum, London before coming to Maynooth as a Marie Curie Fellow working on the origins of Eukaryotes.


Dr. James Cotton

James Cotton graduated with a 1st class honours BA in Biological Sciences from The University of Oxford in 1997. He studied from 1999 to 2003 for his PhD at the University of Glasgow in the area of Vertebrate Phylogenomics and Gene Family Evolution. He then worked with Mark Wilkinson at The Natural History Museum in London, UK and at Maynooth on an SFI-funded post-doctoral project and later, James was awarded a post-doctoral fellowship by IRCSET, working on the origin of Eukaryotes.


Dr. Jennifer Commins

Jenny worked on the influence of random genetic drift and selection on the evolution of haploid organisms. This was investigated entirely using computational methods. Jenny developed a sequence evolution simulator and evaluated how different methods of analysing evolution would deal with different evolutionary scenarios.


Dr. Gayle Philip

Gayle worked on the development of methods for the construction of phylogenetic supertrees from genomic data. In particular, she worked on the analysis of ancient relationships among the eukaryotes and on evaluating a variety of hypotheses relating to eukaryotic evolution. Gayle is currently working at the Victorian Life Sciences Comutation Initiative (VLSCI).


Caroline Finnerty

Caroline worked on the correlation between coding sequence evolution and the evolution of promoter sequences. In particular, she focussed on the mammals, working with completed genome sequences and predicted promoter sequences. Caroline is now a world-famous author.


Dr. Thomas Keane

Thomas worked on the development of distributed computing methods in molecular phylogeny reconstruction. He developed the MultiPhyl software and the ModelGenerator software, both of whom are extensively used in phylogenetic laboratories worldwide. Thomas also worked on the evaluation of models of sequence evolution. Thomas is currently working as a staff member at The Sanger Centre in Cambridge, UK.


Dr. Rhoda Kinsella

Rhoda worked on the influence of horizontal gene transfer on the evolution of the Actinobacteria, focussing somewhat on the evolution of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacterium that causes Tuberculosis. Rhoda found that this organism has obtained a number of its fatty acid synthesis genes from alpha-proteobacteria.


Dr. Simon Travers

Simon worked on the evolution of HIV and focussed on an outbreak of subtype C in rural Malawi. He also worked on trying to understand the selective pressures acting on the virus globally.


Dr. Melissa Pentony

Melissa worked on the development of quartet-based methods for the construction of phylogenetic supertrees and on methods for evaluating the robustness of the hypotheses generated by these supertrees.


Dr. David Fitzpatrick

Dave worked on the origin of the mitochondrion and the phylogeny of the alpha proteobacteria as well as the evolution of a group of proteins that are essential for cell viability. Dave is currently working as a lecturer in NUI Maynooth.


Dr. Mary O'Connell

Mary worked on the evolution of the human and mouse genomes, in particular the selective pressures that have shaped their evolution over the past 100 million years or more.


Dr. Chris Creevey

Chris worked in the lab first as a graduate student and subsequently as a post doc. He has developed the CLANN software as well as the CRANN software for inferring phylogenetic supertrees and for detecting selection respectively. Chris is currently a Reader in Rumen Systems Biology in Aberystwyth University.

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