Two NUIG researchers to represent Ireland at Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting

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Two researchers from NUI Galway have been selected to represent Ireland at the 70th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting.

Dr Joseph Byrne and Dr Adele Gabba from the University’s School of Chemistry will attend the prestigious meeting of Nobel Laureates and emerging scientists from around the world.

They will join a group of 660 outstanding early-career scientists from 101 countries and meet with 68 Nobel Prize winners in the fields of chemistry, medicine and physiology, and physics.

The researchers were among six scientists nominated by the Irish Research Council (IRC), before going through a rigorous international selection process, through which only half of nominees were ultimately invited to attend.

They will receive a grant from the Irish Research Council to enable them to attend the meeting, which takes place from 27 June to 2 July next year on the island of Lindau in Germany.

The meeting was scheduled for this summer, but due to the outbreak of COVID-19, it has been postponed until 2021.

Dr Adele Gabba recently graduated with a PhD in Chemistry and currently works as a research assistant in the group of Professor Paul Murphy, School of Chemistry at NUI Galway.

She will begin a prestigious Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship in MIT in the coming months.

She said that being selected to attend a Nobel Laureate Meeting is a dream come true.

“I have been certainly looking forward with immense excitement for June, so I have to confess the news of the postponement for COVID-19 came along with a bit of disappointment.

“Despite my childlike eagerness, I think the organising committee took the right decision.

“I am sure all attendees will see that waiting and, most of all, the reason behind it, as an opportunity to reflect deeply on the importance of bringing together researchers with a different background in an interdisciplinary meeting.

“Problems that impact our society are mostly extremely complex, we will succeed in solving them only if we put our brains and best efforts together,” she said.

Dr Joseph Byrne is an Honorary Research Lecturer in the School of Chemistry, who is in the first year of a Science Foundation Ireland Starting Investigator Research Grant project, developing luminescent glycoconjugate materials for detection of bacterial infections.

Dr Byrne said: “This meeting is unique in putting the most ground-breaking scientists of recent decades and early-career researchers around the same tables for a week.

“With little-to-no distraction from the outside world, it is ideal for transferring ideas and sharing challenges between generations and countries as well as different disciplines.

“I am looking forward to building new relationships with other chemists, but also biochemists, physicists, medical scientists, who I could collaborate with to tackle challenging scientific questions of international relevance in the future.”