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Dr. Richard Porter

Associate Professor (Biochemistry)

I completed my 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 Prof. Martin D. Brand. I was subsequently awarded a Health Research Board (HRB)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. I have 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. I have over 60 publications in peer reviewed scientific journals and currently has over €0.5M in research grants. I am an editor with a leading Elsevier Journal (Biochimica Biophysica Acta-Bioenergetics) and am regularly invited to give lectures at Conferences, Universities and Research Institutes. I teach many aspects of biochemistry to scientists, medical students, pharmacists at all levels within the University and has received a Provost Teaching Award commendation. I am 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. I regularly participates in scientific outreach projects such as the "Fat" exhibition in the Science Gallery. I also act a consultant for Price Waterhouse Coopers in the area of R&D Tax Credits and as a product consultant for Artelo. My research has resulted in the discovery of the nature of the "speed gene" in Thoroughbred horses [][] and I am an inventor on the World's First Nutrigenomic Product for Thoroughbred Horses, now sold as EnerGene-Q10 by Plusvital[]. Furthermore, in addition to basic research grants from Science Foundation Ireland, The Health Research Board, Teagasc and Trinity, I have an 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
 Development of an in vitro model of cachexia
 Exploitation of a Novel in vitro Skeletal Muscle Cell System to Develop New Nutritional Products for the Thoroughbred Horse
 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)[][] 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 2015-2020
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
The Use of Reactive Oxygen Species Production by Succinate Driven Reverse Electron Flow as an Index of Complex 1 Activity in Isolated Brown Adipose Tissue Mitochondria in, editor(s)Palmeira, Carlos M., Moreno, António J. (Eds.) , Mitochondrial Bioenergetics: Methods & Protocols, Springer, 2021, [Andrea Dlasková, Kieran J. Clarke, Mary F. Rooney and Richard K. Porter], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED
K.Keogh, C.McKenna, R.K.Porter, S.M.Waters, D.A.Kenny, Effect of dietary restriction and subsequent realimentation on hepatic oxidative phosphorylation in cattle, Animal, 2021, p100009-, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  URL
Emma B. O'Connor, Natalia Muñoz-Wolf, Gemma Leon, Ed C. Lavelle, Kingston H. G. Mills, Patrick T. Walsh and Richard K. Porter, UCP3 reciprocally controls CD4+ Th17 and Treg cell differentiation, PLoS ONE, 15, (11), 2020, pe02-, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
Eóin C. O'Brien, Carla A. White, Jason Wyse, Emma Leacy, Richard K. Porter, Mark A. Little, Fionnuala B. Hickey, Pro-inflammatory Stimulation of Monocytes by ANCA Is Linked to Changes in Cellular Metabolism, Frontiers in Medicine (Rheumatology) , 7, 2020, p553-, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  URL
Mary F Rooney, Caitriona E Curley, James Sweeney, Michael E Griffin, Richard K Porter, Emmeline W Hill, Lisa M Katz, Prolonged oral coenzyme Q10-β-cyclodextrin supplementation increases skeletal musclecomplex I+III activity in young, untrained healthy Thoroughbreds, Journal of Applied Animal Nutrition, 8, (1), 2020, p11 - 20, Notes: [], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  URL
Aasander Frostner E, Acuna-Castroviejo D, Ahn B, Alves MG, Amati F, Aral C, Arandarcikaite O, Bailey DM, Bakker BM, Bastos Sant'Anna Silva AC, Battino M, Beard DA, Ben-Shachar D, Bishop D, Borutaite V, Breton S, Brown GC, Brown RA, Buettner GR, Burtscher J, Calabria E, Calbet JA, Calzia E, Cardoso LHD, Carvalho E, Casado Pinna M, Cervinkova Z, Chang SC, Chaurasia B, Chen Q, Chicco AJ, Chinopoulos C, Clementi E, Coen PM, Collin A, Crisostomo L, Das AM, Davis MS, De Palma C, Dias TR, Distefano G, Doerrier C, Drahota Z, Duchen MR, Ehinger J, Elmer E, Endlicher R, Fell DA, Ferko M, Ferreira JCB, Filipovska A, Fisar Z, Fischer M, Fisher JJ, Fornaro M, Galkin A, Garcia-Roves PM, Garcia-Souza LF, Garten A, Genova ML, Giovarelli M, Gonzalez-Armenta JL, Gonzalo H, Goodpaster BH, Gorr TA, Gourlay CW, Granata C, Grefte S, Haas CB, Haavik J, Han J, Harrison DK, Hellgren KT, Hernansanz-Agustin P, Holland OJ, Hoppel CL, Houstek J, Hunger M, Iglesias-Gonzalez J, Irving BA, Iyer S, Jackson CB, Jadiya P, Jang DH, Jansen-Duerr P, Jespersen NR, Jha RK, Kaambre T, Kane DA, Kappler L, Karabatsiakis A, Keijer J, Keppner G, Klingenspor M, Komlodi T, Koopman WJH, Kopitar-Jerala N, Krako Jakovljevic N, Kuang J, Kucera O, Labieniec-Watala M, Lai N, Laner V, Larsen TS, Lee HK, Lemieux H, Leeuwenburgh C, Lerfall J, Liu J, Lucchinetti E, MacMillan-Crow LA, Makrecka-Kuka M, Malik AN, Markova M, Menze MA, Meszaros AT, Michalak S, Moisoi N, Molina AJA, Montaigne D, Moore AL, Mracek T, Muntane J, Muntean DM, Murray AJ, Nemec M, Neuzil J, Newsom S, Nozickova K, O'Gorman D, Oliveira PF, Oliveira MT, Oliveira PJ, Orynbayeva Z, Pak YK, Palmeira CM, Patel HH, Pecina P, Pelnena D, Pereira da Silva Grilo da Silva F, Pesta D, Petit PX, Pichaud N, Piel S, Pirkmajer S, Porter RK, Pranger F, Prochownik EV, Pulinilkunnil T, Puurand M, Radenkovic F, Radi R, Ramzan R, Reboredo P, Renner-Sattler K, Robinson MM, Roesland GV, Rohlena J, Rolo AP, Ropelle ER, Rossiter HB, Rybacka-Mossakowska J, Saada A, Safaei Z, Salin K, Salvadego D, Sandi C, Scatena R, Schartner M, Scheibye-Knudsen M, Schilling JM, Schlattner U, Schoenfeld P, Schwarzer C, Scott GR, Shabalina IG, Sharma P, Sharma V, Shevchuk I, Siewiera K, Silber AM, Singer D, Smenes BT, Soares FAA, Sobotka O, Sokolova I, Spinazzi M, Stankova P, Stier A, Stocker R, Sumbalova Z, Suravajhala P, Swerdlow RH, Swiniuch D, Szabo I, Tanaka M, Tandler B, Tavernarakis N, Tepp K, Thyfault JP, Tomar D, Towheed A, Tretter L, Trifunovic A, Trivigno C, Tronstad KJ, Trougakos IP, Tyrrell DJ, Urban T, Valentine JM, Velika B, Vendelin M, Vercesi AE, Victor VM, Villena JA, Vitorino RMP, Vogt S, Volani C, Votion DM, Vujacic-Mirski K, Wagner BA, Ward ML, Watala C, Wei YH, Wieckowski MR, Williams C, Wohlwend M, Wolff J, Wuest RCI, Zaugg K, Zaugg M, Zischka H, Zorzano A, Supporting:, Bernardi P, Boetker HE, Borsheim E, Bouitbir J, Coker RH, Dubouchaud H, Durham WJ, Dyrstad SE, Engin AB, Gan Z, Garlid KD, Haendeler J, Hand SC, Hepple RT, Hickey AJ, Hoel F, Kainulainen H, Khamoui AV, Kowaltowski AJ, Krajcova A, Lane N, Lenaz G, Liu SS, Mazat JP, Methner A, Nedergaard J, Pallotta ML, Parajuli N, Pettersen IKN, Porter C, Sazanov LA, Skolik R, Sonkar VK, Vieyra A, Mitochondrial physiology. , Bioenergetics Communications, 2020, Notes: [doi:10.26124/bec:2020-0001.v1], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  URL
C. McKenna , R. K. Porter, C. Fitzsimons , S. M. Waters, M. McGee, D. A. Kenny, Mitochondrial abundance and function in skeletal muscle and liver from Simmental beef cattle divergent for residual feed intakee , Animal, 14, (8), 2020, p1710-1717 , Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
C. McKenna , R. K. Porter, C. Fitzsimons, S. M. Waters, M. McGee and D. A. Kenny, "An examination of skeletal muscle and hepatic tissue transcriptomes from beef cattle divergent for residual feed intake", Scientific Reports, submitted, 2020, Journal Article, SUBMITTED
M. F. Rooney and Caitriona E. Curley and J. Sweeney and M. Griffin and R. K. Porter and E. Hill and L. Katz, Prolonged oral coenzyme Q10-β-cyclodextrin supplementation increases skeletal muscle complex I+III activity in young Thoroughbreds, Journal of Applied Animal Nutrition, 8, (1), 2020, p11 - 20, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  URL
Marilena Karavyraki, The role of IL-6 in anoikis resistance and metabolic programming in Oral Squamous Cell Cancer, 2020, Thesis, PUBLISHED

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Saoirse Elizabeth O'Sullivan, Andrew S Yates, Richard Porter, The peripheral cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) as a molecular target for modulating body weight in man, Molecules, 2021, Review Article, IN_PRESS
David Tombs, A new covenant?, Sunday Sequence, 30 September 2012, BBC Radio Ulster, 2012, Oral Presentation, PRESENTED


Award Date
Shortlisted for Knowledge Ireland (KTI) Award. 2018
Awarded commendation for Teaching by Trinity College Dublin (Provosts' Teaching Award) July 2014
Lucker-Cobbe Award
Fellow of Trinity College Dublin 2007
1. The molecular basis of metabolic rate, and cold adaptation in mammals: The majority of my research career has focused on the molecular basis of metabolic rate, and cold adaptation in mammals, research areas that has direct implications for understanding physiology and for developing anti-obesity and anti-type 2 diabetes strategies. I have demonstrated that a phenomenon known as mitochondrial proton leak explains one fifth our resting metabolic rate and factors, such as body size, that determine metabolic rate also effect mitochondrial efficiency (data published in high impact factor (IF) journals such as Nature 24.36; Biochem J 4.33; BBA 3.465; Am J Physiol 3.55). Our laboratory also has a major focus on mitochondrial uncoupling proteins (UCPs) demonstrating (a) that UCP1 can regulate reactive oxygen species production in brown adipose tissue, (b) UCP1 is covalently modified and its turnover is regulated by the proteasome, (c) that UCP1 is also present in the thymus, (d) that UCP3 is activated in skeletal muscle by ecstasy and (e) UCP3 can direct T-cell activation and proliferation, (data published in high impact factor journals such as FASEB J 5.391; JBC 4.1; BBA 3.465; Mitochondrion 3.43). 2. Thoroughbred horse performance, bioenergetics and metabolism: We have recently elucidated the biochemical basis of the crucial performance defining myostatin polymorphism in Thoroughbred Horses (Rooney et al., 2018). Essentially we have discovered why certain Thoroughbred horses are are born to be sprinters ! In addition, we uncovered a bioenergetic difference between endurance and sprint Thoroughbred Horses (Rooney et al., 2017) which resulted in us patenting the discovery through TCD & UCD, and us getting a licence to use that IP to grant the company PlusVital to produce the First Nutrigenomic Nutrient for Thoroughbred horses [World's First Nutrigenomic Product for Thoroughbred Horses, now sold as EnerGene-Q10 by Plusvital. See recent press coverage:] and publication of efficacy (Rooney et al., 2020). We also currently have an Enterprise Ireland Innovation Partnership Programme grant to develop an in vitro assay system for skeletal muscle of Thoroughbred horses. Data published in moderately high impact factor journals such as PLOS One (2.776). 3. Cancer Metabolism: We have a major Marie Curie grant to discover new anti-cancer targets in oral squamous cancer cells (OSCCs), focusing on proteins associated with mitochondrial function. We have recently identified IL-6 as a protagoist in anoikis resistance and metabolic/mitochondrial programming, while demonstrating the IL-6 receptor is a potential target for OSCC therapy (Karavyraki, 2020; Karavyraki et al., 2017; 2018). We have also published anti-cancer target data for (a) neuroblastoma cancers (Geoghegan et al., 2017), (b) mesothelioma and non-small lung cancer cells (Geoghegan et al., 2017) and (c) breast cancer cells (Martinez et al., 2017). Some of the work has involved collaboration with Lorraine O'Driscoll in Pharmacy (TCD) and Data published in high impact factor journals such as Scientific Reports (4.525); Onotarget (3.710). 4. The Mitochondrial Choline Transporter: I discovered and characterised the transporter for the metabolite, choline, across the mitochondrial inner membrane (Porter et al., 1992; 1993; Kaplan et al., 1993; O'Donoghue et al., 2009)[data published in high impact factor journals such as JBC (4.1); BBA (3.465)]. Choline is an important metabolite and has been classed as a constitutive vitamin. It is oxidised to betaine in the kidney which acts as a methyl-donor in liver and kidney (linking it to folic acid/vitamin B12 metabolism) and betaine is important for osmotic status in kidney. I have recently entered an official collaboration with Prof. Laurence Brody at NIH, Bethesda to hunt for the gene that expresses the choline transporter protein.