Director of the Irish Centre for Fetal and Neonatal Translational Research (INFANT)

Louise Kenny

Louise Kenny is the founding Director of the Irish Centre for Fetal and Neonatal Translational Research (INFANT). She is Professor of Obstetrics at University College Cork and Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Cork University Maternity Hospital, where she specialises in the management of high risk pregnancy. Louise has had long-standing clinical and research interest in the most common complications of pregnancy. Louise graduated in Medicine with Honours from the University of Liverpool, UK, in 1993. After completing her clinical and doctoral training in the UK in 2006, Louise was recruited to University College Cork. In 2007, Louise was appointed as a Health Research Board Ireland Clinician Scientist. This 4 year award (of €1.6 million) underpinned the Screening for Pregnancy Endpoints SCOPE Study – a prospective longitudinal case cohort of pregnancy outcome which is now one of the world’s largest global pregnancy biobanks. The SCOPE study was also the foundation of Ireland’s first birth cohort- BASELINE: Babies after SCOPE, Evaluating Longitudinal Indices of Nutrition.
In 2009, Louise was awarded a prestigious Principal Investigator Programme grant from Science Foundation Ireland to develop predictive metabolomic markers of poor pregnancy outcomes. She is currently coordinating an EU FP7 funded European Consortium called IMPROvED which is conducting a phase IIa clinical trial of a prototype screening test for pre-eclampsia based on metabolomic technology. Under Louise’s leadership, perinatal research has emerged as the leading thematic research area for UCC. Her success was formally recognised in 2013, when she led a successful bid under the Science Foundation Ireland Research Centres call to establish INFANT, the first perinatal research centre in Ireland. INFANT has grown to become a centre of 100 investigators and staff with a funding portfolio of over €30m.
Louise is the co-lead of the Health Research Board Mother and Baby Clinical Trials Network Ireland, and is Principal Investigator for the HRB funded STRIDER and PARROT Trials.
Louise was awarded Enterprise Ireland Researcher of the Year (Life Sciences) in 2014. Along with INFANT co-director Prof Geraldine Boylan, she was named Science Foundation Ireland Researcher of the Year in 2015. She was also named Irish Tatler Magazine Woman of the Year for STEM and Mums and Tots Magazine Obstetrician of the Year in 2015.