Science Foundation Ireland recognises Dr Orla O’Sullivan
Dr Orla O’Sullivan, Funded Investigator at APC Microbiome Ireland and Vistamilk SFI Research Centres has been awarded the SFI Early Career Researcher of the Year Award 2019, an award which recognises outstanding early career research talent.
Orla completed her degree in Biochemistry and PhD in Bioinformatics in UCC. She went on to complete a postdoctoral fellowship at the Conway Institute UCD and then joined Teagasc, where she focuses on profiling the microbiome and where she has worked on the ELDERMET project amongst many others.
In 2014, Orla was awarded an SFI Starting Investigator Research Grant to allow her to establish herself as an independent scientist. In the same year she was awarded the APC Junior Scientist of the Year. She is committed to communicating science to all and actively participates in a number of outreach programmes such as BIG STEM communicators, BT Young Scientist, Fota Mad Scientist and World Microbiome Day. Her research focuses on the microbiome and her studies have established that healthy and protein-rich athlete diets result in a more diverse gut microbiota than standard diets. She aims to utilise outputs from this research to holistically manage chronic illnesses associated with the gut microbiome, thereby addressing a number of critical societal health challenges.
In 2018, Orla was one of ten APC researchers named by Clarivate Analytics as a Highly Cited Researcher placing her in the top 1% of researchers worldwide.
Orla shares the 2019 award with Assoc. Prof. Lydia Lynch, TCD .