I gained my B.Sc. in Microbiology, M.Sc. (Res) in infectious diseases molecular diagnostics and Ph.D. in molecular diagnosis of bacterial pathogens in food all at the National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG). I stayed at NUIG for my first post-doc, continuing in food microbiology research. This was followed by a two-year stint in industry (Beckman Coulter) developing real-time PCR based molecular diagnostics assays for infectious diseases including Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
I then returned to academia, taking up a post-doc position at University College London on TB diagnostics. In January 2013 I was appointed Lecturer in Medical Microbiology at UEA, was promoted to Senior Lecturer in August 2016, and Professor of Medical Microbiology in February 2021.
I joined the Quadram Institute as a Group Leader in April 2018 while maintaining my affiliation with the University of East Anglia (UEA). My research continues to focus on the molecular diagnosis of pathogens with the aim of translating this research broadly, in different sectors and diseases, to maximise community/patient benefit.
Schmidt K, Mwaigwisya S, Crossman LC, Doumith M, Munroe D, Pires C, Khan AM, Woodford N, Saunders NJ, Wain J, O’Grady J (joint last and corresponding), Livermore DM. Identification of bacterial pathogens and antimicrobial resistance directly from clinical urines by nanopore-based metagenomic sequencing. J Antimicrob Chemother 2017 Jan;72(1):104-114. doi: 10.1093/jac/dkw397
Jain M, Koren S, Miga KH, Quick J, Rand AC, Sasani TA, et al. Nanopore sequencing and assembly of a human genome with ultra-long reads. Nat Biotechnol. 2018. doi: 10.1038/nbt.4060
Burnham CD, Leeds J, Nordmann P, O’Grady J (all authors contributed equally), Patel J. Diagnosing antimicrobial resistance. Nat Rev Microbiol. 2017;15(11):697-703. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro.2017.103
Ashton, P.M., Nair, S., Dallman, T., Rubino, S., Rabsch, W., Mwaigwisya, S., Wain, J., and O’Grady, J. MinION nanopore sequencing identifies the position and structure of a bacterial antibiotic resistance island. Nature Biotech, 2015, 33(3):296-300. doi: 10.1038/nbt.3103
Bates M, O’Grady J (joint first author) et al: Assessment of the Xpert MTB/RIF assay for diagnosis of tuberculosis with gastric lavage aspirates in children in sub-Saharan Africa: a prospective descriptive study. Lancet Infect Dis 2013, 13(1):36-42. doi: 10.1016/S1473-3099(12)70245-1