Prof. Helen McCarthy

Prof. Helen McCarthy

Dean of Postgraduate Strategy, Professor of Nanomedicine, School of Pharmacy, Queen’s University Belfast and CEO of pHIon Therapeutics

Professor Helen McCarthy holds the Chair of Nanomedicine in the School of Pharmacy at Queen’s University Belfast. Helen is also the Dean of Postgraduate Strategy for the institution with academic oversight of the Graduate School. Helen’s research is centred on novel non-viral delivery systems for nucleic acids and anionic small molecules. These are peptide delivery systems that are purposely designed to solve key criteria for controlled intracellular delivery. Academic research projects include genetic therapies in cancer, chronic wounds and bone regeneration.  Apart from >150 publications, >200 conference proceedings and editorial work, Helen has contributed new knowledge as the inventor of the RALA technology and is a named inventor on 16 patents. This technology was designed to deliver nucleic acids without any toxicity for which there is a clear gap. After 10 years of academic applications of the technology as a PI supported by >5M in funding, supervision of 30 PhD students to completion, mentorship of 14 Postdoctoral Research Assistants, there was sufficient supporting pre-clinical evidence to move into the commercial sector. Helen is currently the CEO of pHion therapeutics, which incorporated in 2017 and went onto win both Invent NI and the All Ireland Seed Corn Awards. pHion currently employs 12 and has recently secured new premises in Catalyst innovation centre in Titanic Quarter with state of the art laboratories. pHion has a pipeline of products supported by 8 Innovate UK grants and a record breaking series A investment. pHion’s goal is bring the first of its kind mRNA vaccine to the clinic while based in Belfast. As a virtual member of Alderley Park, pHion works closely with Aptus Clinical for clinical trials, Seda for CMC, Charles River France for Toxicology and Alembia for Intellectual Property. We also work closely with Medicines Discovery Catapult to provide scientific oversight of our pipeline vaccine development programmes.

3D mammosphere culture of breast epithelial cell line MCF10A.

Courtesy of Dr. Emer Bourke, NUI Galway

Phospho-Akt expression and localisation

Mediated by VEGF in A549 lung cancer cells. Visualised by high content image analysis.

Courtesy of Dr Martin Barr, Clinical Scientist & Adjunct Assistant Professor, St James’s Hospital & Trinity College Dublin

Metaphase chromosome spread of Jurkat T-lymphoma cells

Courtesy of Rebecca Gorry, PhD Student, Mc Gee Lab, UCD School of Biomolecular & Biomedical Science, Conway Institute, UCD

Apoptosis assessment of SKMES-1 lung cancer cells

Using a multiparameter apoptosis staining kit, showing cell nuclei (blue), actin (green) and mitochondrial activity (orange).

Courtesy of Dr Martin Barr, Clinical Scientist & Adjunct Assistant Professor, St James’s Hospital & Trinity College Dublin

HeLa Cells

Courtesy of Rebecca Gorry, PhD Student, Mc Gee Lab, UCD School of Biomolecular & Biomedical Science, Conway Institute, UCD

IACR & EACR Joint Conference 2020

26 — 28 February 2020 at Galway Bay Hotel, Galway

Mitotic Chronic Myelogenous Leukaemia K562 Cells

Courtesy of Rebecca Gorry, PhD Student, Mc Gee Lab, UCD School of Biomolecular & Biomedical Science, Conway Institute, UCD

Cell to Cell Tweeting

Via nanoparticles (red) in Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC)

Courtesy of Sinéad Lindsay, UCD Conway Institute of Biomolecular and Biomedical Research, University College Dublin (UCD) Ireland.

Confocal Microscopy Analysis

Of phospho-Akt expression in H460 lung cancer cells in response to hypoxia (0.5% O2).

Courtesy of Dr Martin Barr, Clinical Scientist & Adjunct Assistant Professor, St James’s Hospital & Trinity College Dublin

EACR Free Membership

The IACR is an affiliated national society and its members benefit from full membership of the EACR. 

IACR 2022 Conference Registration

Please register by completing our online form.

IACR 2022 Conference Accommodation

B&B Rates and how to get to Radisson Blu Hotel, Cork

Latest News

FACEBOOK

Irish Association
for Cancer Research  

9A Coolkill, Sandyford
Dublin 18, Ireland
D18 C1W3

info@iacr.ie
+353 (0)295 8859

Irish Association for Cancer Research (IACR) is a registered charity on the Register of Charitable Organisations, Charities Regulator, 3 George's Dock, IFSC, Dublin 1, D01 X5X0, Ireland.

Registered Charity Number (RCN): 20030117.

©Design by LetterEleven