CANCER AND CLINICAL TRIALS: Recent Advancements and Ongoing Challenges

Cancer is now the most common cause of death in Ireland and yet more people than ever are living with it. Thanks to the research and the advancements made in detection and treatment, the rate of survival in Ireland continues to improve with over 170,000 people in Ireland living with and beyond cancer. With the impact of cancer reaching far beyond treatment how can we ensure the needs of cancer survivors are being met; that they can come back from treatment and thrive?

With an ageing population there needs to be a sustained focus on treatment and prevention of cancer. The successful development of new therapies is dependent on patients and medical centres able and willing to participate in clinical trials. This success can be seen in particular from new immunotherapy trials showing unprecedented benefits to cancer patients.

LIVING WITH... is a flagship event series beginning in 2019 in partnership with ICON​ that aims to explore healthcare, the human experience and the future of disease treatment in a way that is engaging and drives the conversation. As part of our LIVING WITH series, this panel discussion will look at the latest developments in delivering a tailored approach to cancer care and diagnostics. We will not only speak to the researchers on the front lines of clinical trials but we will also hear about life after treatment and the impact cancer has on patients’ lives.

This discussion will be live-streamed through the Science Gallery Dublin Facebook page.


Dr. Martin Lachs has over 27 years’ experience in clinical development. He heads up ICON’s Oncology and Cell Therapeutics Project Management Group, lending operational and indication expertise across a group of over 270 international project management staff, dedicated to oncology drug development. Most recently he has spearheaded ICON’s work in Adoptive Cellular Transfer, particularly in CAR T, an emerging form of immunotherapy that uses a patient's own re-engineered cells to attack cancer.  Martin has published a number of position papers on oncology & cell therapeutics in the pharmaceutical press and is a regular speaker at key international oncology conferences, including the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and CAR T Summit Meetings. Martin holds a BSc in Biotechnology from the University of Leeds and a Ph.D in Cell Biology from the University of Manchester.

Cliona O'Farrelly is Chair of Comparative Immunology and Fellow of Trinity College Dublin. A recipient of the Irish Research Scientists’ Association Gold Medal, the Graves Medal, the Conway Medal, the Isla Haliday Award, Cliona was awarded the 2014 Nature Mentoring Award. Having been President of the Irish Society of Immunology from 2000-2007 and on the Board of the Irish Cancer Society from 2006-2012, Cliona currently serves on the Boards of the Royal Dublin Society and Trinity College Dublin.

Eoin Gill is a 36 year old man, born in Ireland living in London for the last six years. He recently got married and lives in east London with his amazing wife Samantha. At Christmas 2015 he was diagnosed with a brain tumour and is currently on regular scans.

Sinéad Gleeson is a writer of essays, fiction and poetry. Her essays have appeared in Granta, Winter Papers, Gorse and Banshee. Her short stories have been included in Being Various: New Irish Writing, Repeal the 8th and The Broken Spiral. She is the editor of three short story anthologies, including The Long Gaze Back: an Anthology of Irish Women Writers and The Glass Shore: Short Stories by Women Writers from the North of Ireland, both of which won Best Irish Published Book at the Irish Book Awards. A forthcoming anthology, The Art of Glimpse: 100 Irish Short Stories, will be published in 2020 by Head of Zeus. Her debut collection of essays, Constellations: Reflections from Life focuses on the body, art, writing and motherhood. She is currently working on a novel.

Orla Sheils became Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences in 2019. She is a leader in multidisciplinary molecular pathology, who has championed a niche area facilitating interaction between basic science, translational research, clinical service provision and biotechnology. Her research strategy is to improve human health and wellbeing through translational research, and it is predicated on clinical, patient centred, laboratory-based and health service research informed by real world clinical bedside problems, and societal and global health challenges. In 2016 Professor Sheils was appointed as founding Director of the Trinity Translational Medicine Institute - an exclusively health sciences- focused educational and research institution, embedded within the acute hospital setting.

Ciara Kelly Broadcaster and Panel Moderator: Ciara Kelly is a journalist and
broadcaster on Irish radio. She is the presenter of Lunchtime Live on Newstalk.
She also has a weekly column with the Irish Independent.

About Science Gallery Dublin

Established in 2008 by Trinity College Dublin, Science Gallery Dublin’s mission is to engage 15-25 year olds through the intersections of art and science. Since its opening, more than three million visitors to the nonprofit gallery have experienced 45 unique exhibitions, ranging from design and violence to light and love, and from contagion and biomimicry to the futures of the human species and play. At the heart of Science Gallery Dublin lies a rich network of collaborators: artists, designers, performers, academics, scientists, researchers and extraordinary colleagues located in Science Gallery nodes across the world.

About ICON

ICON is a global provider of drug development solutions and services to pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device and government, and public health organisations. The company specialises in the strategic development, management, and analysis of programs that support clinical development - from compound selection to Phase I-IV clinical studies. Founded and headquartered in Dublin since 1990, ICON currently, operates from 90 locations in 37 countries and has approximately 13,680 employees.


  • Date: 
  • Time: 
  • Where: Paccar Theatre
  • Price: FREE - SOLD OUT
  • Register Now

What’s On