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Success Stories

In addition to supporting research the NIKRF also provides funding for equipment unavailable from the National Health Service.

How we help

In addition to supporting research the NIKRF also provides funding for equipment unavailable from the National Health Service.

To assist the clinical and research staff in identifying the many different gene variants that cause diabetic kidney disease the NIKRF part funded the purchase of a BeadArray Station 5000X. The novel high throughput bead array technology, which is at the core of this machine, facilitates the screening of hundreds of thousands of gene variants in thousands of patients. It is the first recision instrument of its type in Ireland. Importantly, acquisition of this machine, which is an industry leader, has allowed the doctors and scientists for the first time to scan the genomes (genetic background) of diabetic individuals with and without nephropathy. Ultimately this work will allow prediction of those at high risk of kidney disease and ensure the most effective treatments are provided to those individuals.


Research Fellows

Dr Amy-Jane McKnight

Dr Amy Jayne McKnight who was both a PhD student and then a post-doctoral research fellow supported by NIKRF has now been confirmed in post by Queens University. Amy Jayne is a Lecturer in the Nephrology Research Group. This means she has passed through the University probationary period in less than 3 years rather than the customary 5 years. This accelerated career path reflects her talent and industry in converting research ideas into published outputs.


Dr Neil Morgan

Dr Neal Morgan was awarded a PhD degree in 2005 was appointed to a consultant nephrologist post in Daisy Hill Hospital, Newry, also in January 2009.


Dr Alastair Woodman

Dr Alastair Woodman was awarded his MD degree in 2008 and took up a substantive consultant nephrologist post in the Ulster Hospital in January 2009.


Dr Aisling Courtney

Dr Aisling Courtney has recently been appointed to the Belfast City Hospital as the clinical lead for transplantation. This follows periods in the last year as a locum consultant in the Royal Free Hospital, London and a continued very productive senior clinical research fellowship supported by the NIKRF. Aisling is, I think, the most prolific author of clinical papers that the NIKRF has supported with almost 30 papers published since the start of her fellowship in 2006. She has made major contributions to the literature on transplantation already.