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Caroline O'Sullivan

Caroline O’Sullivan, PhD
Room: E9



Caroline graduated with an honours degree in Industrial Chemistry (1998) and completed a masters by research into the ‘In-vitro degradation of poly (butylcyanoacrylate) nanoparticles for drug delivery systems’ in 2001 from University of Limerick (Elan Pharmaceuticals). She completed her PhD on the topic of ‘Novel coatings for hard tissue implants’ from the School of Pharmacy in University College Cork. She has supervised research in the University of South Carolina USA into the areas of biosensors and self assembly models using novel organic/polymer systems (2003-2004). She is a member of the American Chemical Society since 2005 and  the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE) since 2010. She has held positions as Visiting Research Associate in University College Dublin (2010) and University College Liverpool (2010-2012) in order to conduct collaborative research in the areas of in-vitro and in-vivo product development evaluations.  She has worked for four years as a Consultant Scientist for Materials Ireland; serving the pharmaceutical, medical device, food and chemical Industries in Ireland providing solutions to production issues, R&D activities and material analysis (2005-2006; 2001-2003). In addition, she has occupied industrial roles as Senor Research Chemist in Dow Corning Ireland developing plasma deposition chemical processes for modifying the chemistry of surfaces for packaging, electronic and medical applications (2006-2008). She worked with the medical device company EnBIO, conducting research into new product development from bench-top tests to in-vitro and preclinical trials to commercialization (2008-2010).


Teaching Activities

Delivers the following modules (level 6 to level 9 (certificate, BSc, BEng, Dip)): Validation Science, Process Technology Transfer, Contamination Control, Biopharmaceutical Processing and Biotechnology. Supervises Final Year Projects to the Chemical and Biochemical Engineering (BEng), Good Manufacturing  Practices and Technology (BSc) and Biopharmaceutical Technology (BSc). Work-Placement co-ordinator for level 7 Diploma in Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing Operations. Responsible for organising CPD events for the level 7 Diploma programs to equip students with the necessary soft skills in preparing them for the recruitment selection process, the work place environment and social media platforms. Involved in IWISH STEM CIT, Engineering Week and promoting programs to industry and schools.  .


Research Interests

Pharmaceutical developments, drug delivery systems, microneedle development, powder processing, functional coatings (polymers, ceramic materials and antimicrobial), deposition processes.


Postgraduate Research Supervision

Carlota Márquez-Graña (Jan 2016-present) Development of a Novel Single-Use Microneedle Design Platform for Increased Patient Compliance (PhD).

Marta Carracedo-Taboada, (Nov 2015-present) Development of Ceramic Microneedles for Drug Delivery Systems (PhD).

Pablo Catro, (Jan 2016-June 2016) Development of Calcium Phosphate Microneedles as Drug Delivery Systems Research Project Erasmus Programme (MEng).

Marta Carracedo-Taboada, (Jan 2015-June 2015) Development of Ceramic Microneedles through Micro-moulding Methods Research Project Erasmus Programme (MEng).


Research and Teaching Funding:

  • Level 6 Certificate in Cleanroom Manufacturing Practices Springboard Funding (22k) (2017-2018)
  • Level 6 Certificate in Biotechnological manufacturing Operations Springboard Funding (64k) (2017-2018)
  • Level 7 Diploma in Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing Operations Springboard funding (120k)(2017-2018)
  • (RISAM PhD funding (CIT) (50k) (2016)
  • RISAM PhD funding (CIT) (50k) (2015)
  • EI Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Technology Centre Initial Research Programme (CIT) (78k) (2012).
  • Private industrial pharmaceutical source (UCC) (100K) (2013).
  • College of Medicine and Health, UCC (1K) (2012).
  • EI Feasibility Study “Promex Orthopaedic Coating” between EnBIO and CIT (MEDIC) (10K) (2008).
  • Enterprise Ireland ATRP “CERAMIJET” (250K) (2001).

Research Projects:

  • Development of a Novel Single-Use Microneedle Design Platform for Increased Patient Compliance (CIT) (Jan 2017-present).
  • Development of Ceramic Microneedles for Drug Delivery Systems (CIT) (Nov 2015-present).
  • Development of Dissolvable Microneedles for Drug Delivery Systems (UCC) (Sept 2012-July 2014).
  • Novel Coatings for Hard Tissue Implants (UCC) (Dec 2009-Dec 2012).
  • In-vivo Studies for the Evaluation of Ceramic Coatings for Orthopedic Applications (ENBIO) (Jan 2009-April 2009).
  • In-vivo Studies for the Evaluation of Antimicrobial Coatings for Orthopedic Applications (ENBIO, University of Liverpool) (Sept 2009-April 2010).
  • In-vitro Degradation of Poly (butylcyanoacrylate) Nanoparticles for a Drug Delivery System (University of Limerick ) (Dec 1999-Jan 2001).
  • Acteco: Eco efficient activation for Hyper Functional Surfaces using an Atmospheric Plasma Deposition Process (Dow Corning) (Dec 2004-July Dec 2008).
  • Phase Change Formulation (Materials Ireland Research Centre) (May 2005-July 2006).
  • Directed Self Assembly of Conjugated Poly (thiophene)s, (July 2003-Aug 2004) (University of South Carolina, US).
  • Sugar coated Poly (paraphenyleneethylene)s as Biosensors of Pathogens (July 2003-Aug 2004) (University of South Carolina, US).
  • Self Assembled Borole-Linked Polymers and Macrocycles (July 2003-Aug 2004) (University of South Carolina, US).

Recent Publications

Márquez-Graña, C., Vucen, S., Bryan, K., and O’Sullivan, C. (2017). Development of a Novel Single-Use Microneedle Design Platform for Increased Patient Compliance. Procedia manufacturing 13, 1352-1359.

Carracedo-Taboada, M., O’Sullivan, K., McAuliffe, MAP., Vucen, S and O’Sullivan, C. (2017) The influence of process parameters on the physical characteristics of ceramic microneedles, evaluated using a factorial design. Procedia manufacturing 13, 153-160.

Vucen S and O’Sullivan C. (2017) PLA-based nanoparticulate drug carriers as a percutaneous delivery system for ketoprofen. In Calija B (ed): Microsized and Nanosized Carriers for Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs: Formulation Challenges and Potential Benefits, Academic Press, P161-171.

Moore, A.C., Vucen, S, O'Sullivan, C, Crean, A.M. Composition of microneedle patch for dermal drug delivery and method of production. Patent Application UCC IDF: UCC-14-82. Filed 25th March 2015.


Click here for a complete list of publications (2017-2002) (Books, Patents, Journals, Conference Papers, Posters)