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Trinity College Dublin

Personal Information
College Photo Name Buckley, Conor Timothy
Main Department Mechanical & Manuf. Eng
College Title Assistant Professor
College Tel  
Fax +353 6795554
On completion of a PhD degree in 2007 in the area of scaffolds and bone tissue engineering, Dr. Buckley worked as a senior postdoctoral fellow in the fields of cartilage regenerative medicine and mechanobiology- developing new strategies, medical devices and techniques for stem cell based repair. In 2009, Dr. Buckley was awarded an SFI fellowship to work in the mesenchymal stem cell group at the Leeds Institute of Molecular Medicine, UK focusing on isolation, enrichment and characterisation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) from different tissue sources for regenerative medicine purposes. His current main research area focuses on the development of strategies to regenerate the intervertebral disc (IVD) and articular cartilage. Other research areas include design and development of bioreactor based systems, tissue engineering, nutrient micro-environments, biomaterial interactions and 3D scaffold construct technology. Dr. Buckley was appointed Assistant Professor (Tissue Engineering) in September 2011. He is currently module coordinator for 4B1 Mechanics of Solids, 4B20 Biomaterials, Biomechanics (MSc Bioengineering) and Cell & Tissue (MSc Bioengineering).
Details Date
Visceral- “Living Art Experiment”, TCD Science Gallery, Ireland.
Exhibiting demonstrating ten years of SymbioticA’s challenging work at the frontier between fine art and biotechnology revolving around the nature of the living and non-living.
Contribution: Chief Scientific Advisor.
28th Jan- 25th Feb 2011
4Th UK Stem Cell Meeting, Leeds University. Contribution: Invited committee member 2010
Bioengineering in Ireland (BINI), Grand Hotel, Malahide Dublin.
Contribution: Organising committee
Jan 22-23rd, 2010
“Transformations”, TCD Science Gallery, Ireland, HEA celebration of 10 years of PRTLI funding.
Contribution: Co-organised the “Exploring Bioengineering” exhibit demonstrating the research undertaken by TCBE since its inception.
27th Nov- 2nd Dec 2008
Techno Threads- “Victimless leather”, TCD Science Gallery, Ireland.
Contribution: Setup, installation and management of exhibition piece which demonstrated how tissue cultures could be used to create semi-living clothes
26th Apr- 25th Jul 2008
Membership of Professional Institutions, Associations, Societies
Details Date From Date To
Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine International Society (TERMIS) 2009 Present
European Society of Biomechanics (ESB) 2009 Present
Orthopaedic Research Society (ORS) 2009 Present
Awards and Honours
Award Date
• European Society of Biomechanics S.M. Perren Award 2012: The external mechanical environment can override the influence of local substrate in determining stem cell fate. Thorpe S.D., Buckley C.T., Steward A. and Kelly D.J. 2012
• Engineers Ireland Biomedical Research Medal 2012: Engineering Osteochondral Constructs through Spatial Regulation of Endochondral Ossification. Sheehy E.J., Vinardell T., Buckley C.T. and Kelly D.J. 2012
• Established Researcher Award: Bioengineering in Ireland18, Belfast 27–28 January, 2012. External mechanical stimulus can override the influence of local substrate in determining mesenchymal stem cell fate. Thorpe S.D., Buckley C.T., Steward A.J. and Kelly D.J. 2012
• Best overall oral poster presentation- Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine International Society (TERMIS), Galway Ireland, 13th-17th June 2010. Thorpe S.D., Buckley C.T., Vinardell T., O’Brien F.J., Campbell V.A. and Kelly D.J.: Chondrogenesis of Mesenchymal Stem Cells is Regulated by Dynamic Compression Post TGF-â3 induced Differentiation. 2010
• SFI Short Term Travel Fellowship (STTF) 2009: Awarded €15,000 to acquire expertise and training in the isolation, purification and characterisation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) from different tissue sources (bone marrow, intramedullary adipose tissue, infrapatellar fat pad and synovium membrane) using magnetic bead separation technology and FACS. International Laboratory Collaborators: Prof. Dennis McGonagle and Dr. Elena Jones, Leeds Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Leeds, United Kingdom. 2009
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Description of Research Interests
  • Tissue Engineering of the Intervertebral Disc
  • Functional tissue engineering: Design and fabrication technology for scaffold based repair
  • Development of biomedical devices and solutions for innovative “in-theatre” clinical intervention
  • Rapid isolation of mesenchymal stem cell populations (MSCs) from various tissue sources utilizing magnetic bead enrichment and selection techniques for direct clinical use
  • Numerical modeling and characterization of microenvironments on tissue development by mesenchymal stem cells undergoing differentiation.
  • Development of bioreactor based systems to simulate in vivo biophysical and biochemical environments
  • Influence of biophysical stimuli on neocartilage tissue formation for the repair of osteochondral defects
  • Design and development of bioreactor based systems to simulate in vivo biophysical and biochemical environments
  • Regulation and influence of hypoxia environments of mesenchymal stem cells undergoing chondrogenesis
  • Development of biomedical devices to deliver cell seeded hydrogels/scaffolds
  • Design and fabrication of porous ceramic based scaffolds for use in tissue engineering investigations
Research Interests
Biomaterials Tissue Engineering
Research Projects
Project title Isolation and characterization of different mesenchymal stem cell populations
Summary University of Leeds.
Funding Agency Science Foundation Ireland (SFI)
Programme Short Term Travel Fellowship (STTF) award
Type of Project
Date from Apr 2009
Date to Jan 2010
Person Months

Project title Natural ECM Derived Injectable Microparticles for Regeneration of the Intervertebral Disc (DiscReGen)
Summary Recent evidence suggests that degeneration initiates within the central region of the disc called the nucleus pulposus (NP). The objective of this grant is to develop an injectable microparticle encapsulated Extracellular Matrix (ECM) derived from NP tissue fabricated using electrospraying technology. It is hypothesised that these microparticles will provide key biochemical cues to stimulate repair and regeneration of the disc by the patient’s own cells. This technology and approach for regeneration or repairing the intervertebral disc is highly attractive, and could be performed at an earlier stage of tissue degeneration to alleviate back pain thus reducing the number of patients requiring spinal fusion or artificial implant replacement surgery.
Funding Agency Enterprise Ireland
Programme Commercialisation Fund
Type of Project
Date from Sep 2012
Date to May 2014
Person Months

Project title Injectable Hydrogel Composites for Stem Cell Repair of the Nucleus Pulposus
Summary Autologous cell implantation therapies have been proposed for the treatment of degenerated IVD similar to those currently used for cartilage repair in the knee. Recent investigations have demonstrated that reimplantation of extracted nucleus pulposus (NP) cells can retard degenerative changes, and injection of autologous. NP cells have been clinically tested in humans with herniated discs. However, it is believed that the number of NP cells that can be isolated from a degenerated disc is insufficient to meet the requirements for successful treatment. As an alternative, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) possess significant potential and perhaps provide a more readily available and clinically feasible source of cells for IVD repair therapies. A key challenge with using MSCs is developing suitable biomaterials that can be injected into the NP compartment whilst providing the optimal biochemical and biophysical environment to facilitate differentiation. The proposed project will utilise state of the art tissue engineering and biomaterial strategies using a combination of MSCs, injectable growth factor releasing hydrogel based systems.
Funding Agency Higher Education Authority (HEA).
Programme Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI) Cycle 5
Type of Project
Date from Apr 2012
Date to Apr 2016
Person Months

Publications and Other Research Outputs
Peer Reviewed
Guillaume, O., Daly, A., Lennon K., Gansau J., Buckley S.F. and Buckley, C.T., Shape-memory porous alginate scaffolds for regeneration of the annulus fibrosus - Effect of TGF-β3 supplementation and oxygen culture conditions, Acta Biomaterialia, 2014
TARA - Full Text
Cox G., Boxhall S., Giannoudis P.V., Buckley C.T., Roshdy T., Churchman S.M., McGonagle D. and Jones E.: , High abundance of CD271+ multipotential stromal cells (MSCs) in intramedullary cavities of long-bones, Bone, 50, (2), 2012, p510-517
TARA - Full Text
E.G. Meyer, C.T. Buckley, A.J. Steward, D.J. Kelly, The effect of cyclic hydrostatic pressure on the functional development of cartilaginous tissues engineered using bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells, Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials, 4, (7), 2011, p1257-1265
TARA - Full Text  DOI  URL
Sheehy E.J., Buckley C.T. and Kelly D.J., Chondrocytes and bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells undergoing chondrogenesis in agarose hydrogels of solid and channelled architectures respond differentially to dynamic culture conditions., Tissue Engineering & Regenerative Medicine., 5, (9), 2011, p747–758
Notes: [PMID: 21225596]
Cox G., McGonagle D., Boxhall S.A., Buckley C.T., Jones E. and Giannoudis P.V., The use of the reamer-irrigator-aspirator to harvest mesenchymal stem cells., Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, 93-B, (4), 2011, p517-524
Notes: [PMID: 21464493]
More Publications and Other Research Outputs >>>

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Last Updated:22-SEP-2014