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Dr. Richard Porter

Associate Professor (Biochemistry)


Dr. Porter did his undergraduate degree in Biochemistry at Trinity College. This was followed by a Ph.D. with Prof. John M. Scott in the area of carbon-one metabolism and a three year postdoctoral position at the Department of Biochemistry University of Cambridge UK with Martin D. Brand. He was then awarded a Health Research Board Fellowship based in Prof. Clive William's laboratory in Trinity. Dr. Porter's research focuses on understanding mammalian energy metabolism. His research achievements are based ideas founded in solid science, a substantial grant base, the quality of the researchers that he recruits, the advanced technology in the laboratory and his collaborations with prominent international laboratories, both academic and industrial. He has been a lecturer and Principal Investigator in Trinity since 1997, was appointed Director of Teaching and Learning in the School of Biochemistry & Immunology (Postgraduate) from 2004-2008 & 2016-2017, was elected for two terms as Head of Biochemistry from 2011-2017, and was elected Fellow of Trinity College Dublin since 2007. He has over 60 publications in peer reviewed scientific journals and currently has over €0.75M in research grants. He is an editor with a leading Elsevier Journal (Biochimica Biophysica Acta) in the field of Bioenergetics and is regularly invited to give lectures at Conferences, Universities and Research Institutes. He teaches many aspects of biochemistry to scientists, medical students, pharmacists at all levels within the University and has received a Provost Teaching Award. He is on the management committee of several International Scientific Societies, including the European Bioenergetics Conference, MITOEAGLE COST and the International Union of Biochemists and Molecular Biologists (IUBMB) Nominating Committee. He regularly participates in scientific outreach projects such as the "Fat" exhibition in the Science Gallery. Richard also acts a consultant for Price Waterhouse Coopers in the area of R&D Tax Credits and as a product consultant for Phoenix Green. His research has resulted in the discovery of the nature of the "speed gene" in Thoroughbred horses [https://www.rte.ie/news/2018/1106/1008968-race-horses/][https://www.irishtimes.com/news/science/irish-scientists-pinpoint-what-makes-thoroughbred-racehorses-go-faster-1.3688584] and he is an inventor on the World's First Nutrigenomic Product for Thoroughbred Horses, now sold as EnerGene-Q10 by Plusvital[http://www.tcd.ie/news_events/articles/world-s-first]. Furthermore, in addition to basic research grants from Science Foundation Ireland, The Health Research Board, Teagasc and Trinity, he has a Enterprise Ireland Innovation Partnership Programme grant in collaboration with Plusvital.
  (HUMAN)   (RAT LIVER)   (SKELETAL MUSCLE)   Ageing, memory and other cognitive processes   Analytical Techniques   Basic Skills Education   Biochemistry, Carbohydrates   Biochemistry, Lipids   Biochemistry, metabolism   Biochemistry, Proteins   BODY-MASS   BOVINE   BRAIN   BROWN-ADIPOSE-TISSUE   Diabetes & Obesity   Diabetes and diabetic complications   Drug discovery   Energy Chemical Sciences   EQUINE   Immune system   Innate immunology   Life Sciences   Lipids, steroids, membranes   Membrane Transport   Membrane transport, structure and dynamics   Metabolic Biology   Metabolism and metabolic diseases   Mitochondria   Neuroscience   ORAL-CANCER   OXYGEN CONSUMPTION   Photosynthesis   Proteins, enzymology and protein engineering   Thermal Effects
 Exploitation of a Novel in vitro Skeletal Muscle Cell System to Develop New Nutritional Products for the Thoroughbred Horse
 Metabolic control of the anti-tumour and pro-tumour activities of human invariant natural killer T cells
 Assessment of the Energetic Benefits of Plusvital Supplements/Nutrients on Thoroughbred Horses
 Energy Metabolism in Oral Cancers
 An examination of the biochemical control of cellular energetic efficiency in muscle of beef cattle divergently selected for residual feed intake (RFI)

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Details Date
Representative for Ireland on the European Bioenergetics Conference Committee 2004-present
Representative for Ireland on the International Union of Biochemists and Molecular Biologists (IUBMB) Nominating Committee 2012-present
Representative for Ireland on the MITOEAGLE COST Action 2016 -present
Representative for Ireland on the MITOFOOD COST Action 2005-2009
Chairman of European Bioenergetics Conference 2008 (EBEC 2008)[www.tcd.ie/Biochemistry/ebec2008/][ebec2008@tcd.ie] 2008
Ireland Representation on the COST B10 'Brain Damage and Repair' group. 2000-2004
External examiner in Biochemistry to medical students in University College Cork 2015-2019
On the Editorial Board of Biochimica Biophysica Acta (Bioenergetics) Elsevier 2008-present
External examiner in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) Cathal Brugha street 2009-2013
External examiner in Biochemistry to medical students Royal College of Surgeons, Ireland (RCSI). 2006
External examiner in Biochemistry to medical students University College Dublin (UCD) 2006
External examiner in Biochemistry to medical students Queens University belfast (QUB) 2006
Member of the Peter Mitchell Medal Awarding Committee 2008-2012
Language Skill Reading Skill Writing Skill Speaking
French Basic Basic Basic
Details Date From Date To
Editor of Elsevier's Biochimica Biophysica Acta (Bioenergetics) 2008 present
Member of The European Bioenergetics Conference Committee 2004 present
Member of the Irish Area Section of the Biochemical Society 2006 present
Member of the The UK Biochemical Society 1986 2016
Treasurer of the Irish Area Section of the Biochemical Society (IASBS) 2009 2012
Member of the International Society for Oxygen Transport in Tissues (ISOTT) 2007 2008
Appointed to the Bioenergetics and Metabolism Theme Panel III of the Biochemical Society. 2004 2007
Richard K. Porter, Oxygen Consumption as a measure of Cellular Energy Metabolism, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India, February, 2019, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Richard K. Porter, Oxygen Consumption as a measure of Cellular Energy Metabolism, Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, New Delhi, India, February, 2019, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Sadhbh O'Neill, Richard K. Porter, Vanesa G. Martinez, Lorraine, O'Driscoll , 2-Deoxy-D-Glucose preferentially inhibits aggressive triple-negative breast cancer cells by targeting glycolysis and the cancer stem cell phenotype , Scientific Reports, 9, (1), 2019, p3788 - 3798, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  URL
Emma O'Connor, Richard K. Porter, Patrick T. Walsh, The Role of Mitochondrial Uncoupling Protein 3 in T Cell Function, Frontiers in Immunology, 2019, Journal Article, SUBMITTED
Mary F Rooney, Emmeline W Hill, Vincent Kelly and Richard K Porter, Genotype variation at the MSTN locus is associated with skeletal muscle Coenzyme Q level in untrained Thoroughbred horses., Cell Symposium: Exercise Metabolism, Sitges, Barcelona, Spain, May, 2019, Meeting Abstract, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  URL
McKenna C, Porter RK, Waters SM, Cormican P, McGee M, Kelly AK and Kenny D, An examination of the transcriptional control of energetic efficiency in skeletal muscle and hepatic tissue from beef cattle divergent for residual feed intake, 2019, Working Paper, SUBMITTED
The role of calcium ions for determining mitochondrial glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase activity when measuring uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) function in mitochondria isolated from brown adipose tissue. in, editor(s)Carlos Palmiera , Methods in Molecular Biology , 2018, pp325-336 , [Kieran J Clarke & Richard K. Porter ], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED  URL
Richard K. Porter - RTE, 'Irish scientists uncover what makes a horse run fast or long. https://www.rte.ie/news/2018/1106/1008968-race-horses/', 2018, -, Broadcast, PUBLISHED  URL
Richard K. Porter - Irish Times, 'Irish scientists pinpoint what makes thoroughbred racehorses go faster. https://www.irishtimes.com/news/science/irish-scientists-pinpoint-what-makes-thoroughbred-racehorses-go-faster-1.3688584', 2018, -, Broadcast, PUBLISHED  URL
Emma O'Connor, Richard K. Porter, Patrick T. Walsh, The Role of Mitochondrial Uncoupling Protein 3 in T Cell Function, European Bioenergetics Conference, Budapest, July, 2018, European Bioenergetics Conference, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED  URL
  

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Award Date
Shortlisted for Knowledge Ireland (KTI) Award. http://www.knowledgetransferireland.com/KTI%20Impact%20Awards/ 2018
Awarded commendation for Teaching by Trinity College Dublin (Provosts' Teaching Award) July 2014
Lucker-Cobbe Award
Fellow of Trinity College Dublin 2007
1. Equine skeletal muscle bioenergetics and metabolism: We have recently elucidated the biochemical basis of the crucial performance defining myostatin polymorphism in Thoroughbred Horses (Rooney et al., 2018). In addition, we uncovered a bioenergetic difference associated with the myostatin polymorphism in Thoroughbred Horses (Rooney et al., 2017) we patented the discovery through TCD & UCD, and a licence to use that IP was granted to PluVital to produce the first Nutrigemonic nutrient for Thoroughbred horses [World's First Nutrigenomic Product for Thoroughbred Horses, now sold as EnerGene-Q10 by Plusvital. See recent press coverage: http://www.tcd.ie/news_events/articles/world-s-first].We also currently have an Enterprise Ireland Innovation Partnership Programme grant to develop an in vitro assay system for skeletal muscle of Thoroughbred horses.I currently have Dr. Mary Rooney (postdoc) and Caitriona Curley (research assistant) working on that project. 2. Bioenergetics of Immune cell Function: We have made the novel discovery that the mitochondrial inner membrane transporter, namely mitochondrial uncoupling protein 3 (UCP3), can influence T-cell activation in vitro (O'Connor, Ph.D. thesis, 2018). We have submitted a manuscript for publication to Frontiers in Immunology 3. Metabolic Efficiency: We have just completed a project characterising (a)bioenergetic and metabolic gene expression and (b) mitochondrial function in cattle of the same mass but different residual food intake. Several publications (McKenna et al., 2018) are in the pipeline. 4. Cancer: We have a major Marie Curie grant to characterise the bioenergtic capacity of oral squamous cancer cells, with view to finding novel anti-cancer targets (Karavyraki et al., 2017, 2018). We also are seeking new anti-cancer targets, in (a) neuroblastoma cancers (Geoghegan et al., 2017),(b)mesothelioma and non-small lung cancer cells (Geoghegan et al., 2017) and (c) breats cancer cells (Martinez et al., 2017) 5. Diabetes: We currently have a collaboration with Dr Neil Docherty Professor Carel le Roux and Professor Michael Cowleyin (UCD)in the area of Diabetes on Alpha Melanocyte Stimulatory Hormone and Improvements in Glucose Tolerance in Humans: Role of Enhanced Skeletal Muscle Glucose Uptake and Utilisation. 6. In collaboartion with Dr. Maria Santos, in the School of Pharmacy, we are currently characterizing how tryptophan and its metabolite effect human platelet function.