Eric Downer graduated from Trinity College Dublin (TCD), Dublin, Ireland, with a first class honours degree in physiology (2001) and a Ph.D. degree in neuroscience (2005). He began his postdoctoral research career in the Physiology Department at TCD with Professor Marina Lynch (2005–2008) where his research focused on the signaling events underlying the neuroinflammatory conditions that are associated with brain ageing, particularly the mechanisms controlling microglial cell activation. Subsequently, he was awarded a postdoctoral fellowship from the Irish Research Council for Science Engineering and Technology that enabled him to develop a research programme focused on the neuroimmunomodulatory effects of cannabinoids. This research programme was based with Professor Paul Moynagh at the Institute of Immunology, NUI Maynooth (2008–2010). In 2011, he returned as a Senior Research Fellow with Professor Marina Lynch at the Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience, TCD, also acting as coordinator of the structured PRTLI Ph.D. degree programme at TCD during this time (2012). He was recently appointed to a lectureship in anatomy and neuroscience in UCC (January 2013) and is currently involved in teaching anatomy and neuroscience modules for dental, occupational therapy and speech and language therapy students. Dr. Downer’s research interest is in neuroimmunology, with emphasis on the role of the innate immune system in neuroinflammatory conditions. He has a particular interest in the cannabinoid system and its role in regulating neuroinflammation. His research in this field has made significant contributions to our understanding of cannabinoids as anti-inflammatory therapies, particularly in Multiple Sclerosis. Currently, Eric is the Secretary of the Cannabinoid Ireland research committee and acts a Council Member for the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland (biomedical sciences section).
Biography Updated on 24 February 2013