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Dr Robert Leigh

Dr Robert Leigh is Research Fellow in Bioinformatics & Molecular Epidemiology with the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA), School of Medicine, Trinity College Dublin. Coming from a strong data science background, Rob applies advanced bioinformatic and biostatistical techniques to determine trends in multi-omics datasets with a focus on epigenetic data. Since October 2023, Rob has served as Adjunct Assistant Professor in Statistics with South East Technological University (SETU).

Prior to joining TILDA, Rob was Senior Postdoctoral Researcher in One Health (Metagenomics, Bioinformatics, and Biostatistics) with the Kathleen Lonsdale Institute for Human Health at Maynooth University, where he specialised in two areas:

  • Reducing the bioburden of infectious agents and antimicrobial resistance genes whilst increasing microbial population diversity and the survivability of beneficial symbionts by using dietary supplementation; and
  • The genomic epidemiology of antimicrobial resistant bacteria (and plasmids) through the lens of molecular evolution.

Prior to working with the Kathleen Lonsdale Institute, Rob completed a Ph.D. in Bioinformatics and Molecular Evolution with the Department of Biology, Maynooth University (2019), where he focussed on the extent, rate, and impact of gene remodelling; Rob also completed his B.Sc.(Hons.) in Microbiology with the School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Sciences, University College Dublin (UCD) in 2014. During his Postdoctoral Fellowship, Rob completed a M.Sc. in Innovation with the College of Engineering & Informatics (2020) at the University of Galway, a Specialist Diploma in Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning (2022) with the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems at the University of Limerick, and a Postgraduate Certificate in Applied Statistics (2023) with the School of Mathematics & Statistics at Technological University Dublin.

In 2021, Rob was awarded Chartered Biologist status by the Royal Society for Biology. In 2023, the United Kingdom Science Council conferred Rob with Chartered Scientist status. In 2021, Rob was appointed Peace Commissioner by the Minister for Justice & Equality. In 2023, for his research into animal health (sponsored by a Kentucky based Agricultural Technology company), Rob was awarded an honorary colonelcy by the Governor of Kentucky.

Rob is interested in all things omics and strives to uncover, interpret, and disseminate previously unseen trends in high dimensional data using complex statistical models and machine learning techniques to best further explain biological and biomedical processes.

For a compendium of Rob Leigh’s research, please click here.