Eoin O’Connor is a Teagasc Walsh Fellow in the final year of his Ph.D. studies, which are being done in collaboration with Teagasc’s Mushroom Research Group and Maynooth University. Eoin recently won the Teagasc RDS Gold Medal at the 25th Anniversary Walsh Fellow Seminar at Johnstown Castle. This event showcases the great work being done by Walsh Fellows across the whole of Teagasc and it is a prestigious award for any Ph.D. student. It is the first time a Walsh Fellow from Horticulture has won the medal so we are very proud of him indeed.
Eoin is working with Dr. Helen Grogan in the Horticulture Development Department, Teagasc and Dr.David Fitzpatrick at Maynooth University on a mushroom research project that is characterizing how mushrooms respond to the many viruses that can infect them. Mushroom viruses reduce the quality of fresh mushrooms and result in the produce being downgraded or rejected and so they effectively reduce the profitability of the grower. Eoin’s work has identified that the viruses can be found in different locations within the cells of the mushroom mycelium and that different mushroom strains respond differently to virus infections. He hopes to identify some factors that could be used to produce virus-resistant strains in the future. We wish him every success in his career. ✽