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Food Research Staff: Permanent Researcher

Name: Dr Rita Hickey Dr Rita Hickey
Contact Details: Teagasc Food Research Centre, Moorepark, Fermoy, Co.Cork
+353 (0)25 42664
rita.hickey@teagasc.ie
Career: 2007-present: Senior Research Officer, TFRC, Moorepark, Ireland.
2005-2007: Process Specialist, Abbott Diagnostics, Sligo.
2004-2005: Research Officer, APC, Teagasc, Ireland.
2003-2004: Postdoctoral researcher, MFRC, Teagasc, Ireland.
Research Interests:
  • Food oligosaccharides – extraction, enrichment, fractionation and structural analysis for nutraceutical applications.
  • Development of bioassays for investigating the bioactive properties of glycans isolated from food sources.
  • Manager of tissue culture facilities at Moorepark
  • Electrophoresis including 1D and 2D SDS-PAGE, Western Blotting, protein overproduction, concentration and renaturation.
  • Chromotography - Size-exclusion, Affinity and Ion Exchange Chromatography.
  • Microbial molecular biology techniques
Selected Publications: View selected publications
Equipment / Technologies: The Glyco-ingredients laboratory at Moorepark houses the following equipment for carbohydrate analysis: an Agilent HPLC equipped with ESA Amperometric Detector (Electrochemical Detector), a Dionex HPLC equipped with a UV, Flourescence and Electrochemical detector, a Fluorophore-assisted carbohydrate electrophoresis (FACE) system which provides a simple and versatile method for analysis of both monosaccharides and oligosaccharides and an ÄKTAprime plus for size exclusion chromatography. Many of the in vitro bioassays are performed in our state-of-the-art, self-contained cell culture facilities which house all equipment needed for the growth, maintenance, and analysis of human and animal cells. Laminar flow hoods are present for the sterile handling of cells, as well as atmosphere-controlled incubators for growing cells. Phase-contrast and fluorescence microscopes, and cell counters are available for cell analysis.
Current Role / Title: Senior Research Officer
Education: 2008 FETAC Level 6 Advanced Certificate in Agriculture

2003 Ph.D. Microbiology from NUI Cork (UCC)

1998 B.Sc. Hons (1H) from NUI Dublin (UCD)