Speakers - 2022
Taff is highly active in analytical chemistry and the space technology translation agenda at The Open University. The first half of his career was spent developing instruments for the Rosetta and Beagle2 space missions.
Having successfully analysed a comet, he has since led research teams to develop a wide range of bespoke, high impact, sector disruptive solutions to terrestrial challenges, including developing the award-winning air quality monitoring system for use on all future UK submarines and instruments for the world’s largest flavours and fragrance company. Funding from academia-industry programmes, such as SPRINT, STFC Impact Accelerator Account, the STFC Food Network +, and internal OU programmes, such as the Space Strategic Research Area, HEIF, UIF and AstrobiologyOU has allowed him to work with end-users to develop novel MS based "sniffing solutions"
The MS techniques (mainly GC-MS and GCxGC-MS) are applied for a diverse range of commercial partners whose applications include: determining the shelf-life of rocket salad, identifying avocados damaged or infected with fungi and earlier detection of Campylobacter in chicken farms.
In partnership with the Scotch Whisky Research Institute (SWRI) and IBM Research UK his team is developing methods to authenticate Scotch whisky and with funding from the Partnership for Clean Competition they are developing sports anti-doping screening tests. Taff is a Founder/Director of four start-up companies and is a named inventor on two patents. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce and a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society.
Dr Nicholas Birse
Queens University Belfast
Nicholas Birse studied for a BSc in pharmaceutical chemistry at the University of Dundee and an MSc in instrumental analytical science at Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen. This was followed by a PhD in analytical chemistry at Queen’s University Belfast, graduating in 2020.
He now works as a Research Fellow at Queen’s University Belfast, focusing on advanced mass spectrometry and data analysis to support food authenticity, safety and sustainability within in Chris Elliott’s research group. He has extensive experience of a number of different platforms, from LC-MS through ICP and MALDI to ambient mass spectrometry systems.
Dr Konstantinos Thalassinos
University College London
Kostas obtained his BSc in Genetics at the University of Leicester. He went on to the University of York to undertake a MSc in Bioinformatics before moving to Warick to pursue a experimental/computational PhD in mass spectrometry based proteomics. In 2010 he moved to the Institute of Structural and Molecular Biology at UCL/Birkbeck to take up a lectureship in biophysical Mass Spectrometry and has been there ever since. In 2019 his was promoted to Professor of mass spectrometry. His lab uses structural mass spectrometry to study proteins structure/dynamics particularly relating to protein misfolding diseases.
Dr. Paul O'Byrne
Director Of Technical Ops
Dr O'Bryne is an innovative lead scientist with expertise in analytical science, formulation science, synthesis, instrumental troubleshooting, de novo method development, validation, analytical problem solving and training. He boasts over 15 years experience in both the public and private sector industries/academia He has successfully managed industrial projects and academic projects and maintains a broad range of analytical experience from small molecules up to macro-molecules, bio-polymers and synthetic polymers. His experience with MS based analysis is is diverse and includes analysis of non-polar and petrochemicals, and ionic surfactants.
Dr. Esen Efeoglu Postdoctoral Researcher
Esen Efeoglu is a postdoctoral researcher at the National Institute for Cellular Biotechnology (NICB), Dublin City University. Her main research interests are exploring the dynamics of chronic human disease, understanding the driving forces behind disease formation and progression, and development of novel therapeutic strategies. She started her research in NICB in January 2020 as part of the Proteomics and Cancer Research Groups under the mentorship of Dr Paula Meleady. In September 2021, she received a GOI IRC Postdoctoral Fellowship with the project titled ‘A pincer movement on PDAC: combining proteomics and spectralomics for biological marker discovery’.
University College Dublin
A PhD graduate in Institute of Food and Health, University College Dublin, I am equipped with multidiscipline education background including in metabolomics and human nutrition. During PhD study I was successfully performed nutrition intervention study projects, analyzed and identified metabolites using multiple advanced analytical instruments (LC-MS,GC-MS and NMR).
Dr. Sara Carillo
Dr. Sara Carillo is the applications development team lead in the Characterization and Comparability Laboratory in NIBRT. Sara completed her PhD in Chemical Science at the University of Naples in 2013 working on the structural characterization of bacterial glycoconjugates. In 2015, Sara joined Dr. Jonathan Bones’s research group in NIBRT, working on CHO cell glycome and biotherapeutics characterization.
Dr. Kirsten Dowling
Dr. Kirsten Dowling has been studying and working in the field of chemistry since the 20th century. Having started her career with a MSc in synthetic organic chemistry and working as a process chemist in the pharmaceutical industry, she shifted her career trajectory toward the development LC-MS/MS methods for biological and food matrices. After recently completed her PhD in Nutritional Sciences, with lab work focused on quantification of vitamin D metabolites, she is now a postdoctoral researcher in the Jane English group conducting untargeted and targeted metabolomics studies for the discovery and validation of biomarkers which predict autism. She has a passion for teaching hands-on laboratory skills and good laboratory practices, with the goal of preparing the next generation of biochemists, analysts and researchers with the competencies they need to succeed and the appreciation of mass spectrometry research applications.