Breakthrough Cancer Research Donate

Our Scientific Committee

The members of Breakthrough's Scientific Committee are:


  • Prof. Brendan Buckley (Chair): Prof Buckley, trained as an endocrinologist and has over 30 years’ experience in the medical sector.  He has been CMO of ICON since 2011 having joined ICON through the acquisition of Firecrest Clinical in 2011, where he was one of the founders of the company and Senior Vice President of Medical Affairs. He has extensive experience in clinical trials and chairs several independent Data and Safety Monitoring Boards for medium to large cardio-metabolic and rare disease clinical studies. Prof Buckley is Clinical Professor of Medicine and Pharmacology at the School of Medicine, University College Cork (UCC), Ireland, and has also been director of the university’s European Center for Clinical Trials in Rare Diseases. He has been a board member of the Irish Medicines Board and of the European Medical Agency (EMA)’s Scientific Advisory Group for Diabetes and Endocrinology since 2005. He was also a member of the EMA Committee for Orphan Medicinal Products from 2000-2003 and a member of the EMA’s panel of experts. Professor Buckley is also chairman of the Irish Statutory Anti-Doping Agency and is a member of the UK Anti-Doping Scientific Advisory Board.
  • Dr. Kevin Horgan : Dr Horgan is a physician scientist in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was born in London, and his parents were natives of Clare and Cork. After attending Crescent College Comprehensive in Limerick he graduated in medicine from University College Cork in 1982. He completed postgraduate medical training at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, and UCLA in internal medicine, immunology and gastroenterology. After four years on the faculty at UCLA, where he specialized in managing inflammatory bowel disease, he joined the pharmaceutical industry at Merck Research Laboratories. There he led the development of the groundbreaking drug Emend for the prevention of nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy. A decade after its approval in 2003, no similar drug has been successfully developed. Since then, Dr Horgan has contributed to the development of several novel therapies and diagnostics for inflammatory bowel disease and Alzheimer’s. His immunology research provided important early support for the development of three approved medications for multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis. After working with several small biotechnology companies on novel immunotherapies and diagnostics, he is now a Global Medical Lead at Astra-Zeneca in the rapidly developing area of immunooncology.
  • Dr. Alison O’Mahony: Dr O’Mahony is currently Vice President of Research Biology at Eurofins DiscoverX leading the scientific application of their proprietary BioMAP® platform to fundamentally improve the productivity and efficacy of drug development. As head of R&D, Alison has lead efforts on the development, validation and utilization of BioMAP systems in the areas of autoimmunity, inflammation, fibrosis, immune oncology, tissue remodeling etc. Prior to joining the BioMAP team, Dr O’Mahony was an Investigator at the Gladstone Institutes at UCSF and has over 25 years specializing in cell biology, signal transduction and biomarker expression. She has considerable expertise and experience in phenotypic primary human cell-based systems as predictive models for drug discovery. Dr O’Mahony holds a Ph.D. from the National University of Ireland and was a postdoctoral fellow at University of California, Davis and at UCSF. She has published multiple peer-reviewed papers and invited book chapters and has received a number of international and national awards for her work.
  • Prof. Kevin Harrington: Prof. Harrington specialises in developing new treatments using biologically targeted agents (such as viruses, antibodies and small molecules) that selectively destroy cancer cells. He is Professor of Biological Cancer Therapies at The Institute of Cancer Research and an honorary consultant oncologist at The Royal Marsden. He was appointed as Joint Head of the ICR’s Division of Radiotherapy and Imaging in 2013. Prof. Harrington studied medicine at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, and began focusing on head and neck cancer while a PhD student at Hammersmith Hospital. He completed postdoctoral research in molecular medicine at the Mayo Clinic, Minnesota, before joining the ICR in 2001 as Team Leader in Targeted Therapy within the Section of Cell and Molecular Biology.
  • Prof. Michael Goggins: Dr Goggins is a professor of pathology, medicine and oncology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He serves as director of the Pancreatic Cancer Early Detection Laboratory and is an attending physician in medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, as well as a molecular biologist. Dr. Goggins’ research interests include the role of germline BRCA2 mutations in pancreas cancer and characterizing the molecular genetic progression model for pancreas cancer. He obtained his medical degree in 1988 from Trinity College of the University of Dublin, Ireland. He completed a residency in internal medicine and a fellowship in Gastroenterology at St. James' Hospital in Dublin. He obtained his Membership of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland in 1991 and his European Diploma in Gastroenterology in 1995. He joined the Johns Hopkins faculty in 1999. Dr. Goggins is a member of the Royal College of Physicians and the European Board of Gastroenterology. He sits on the editorial boards of Gut, Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, and Cancer Biology and Therapy.


© Site Designed by Granite Digital