School of Science & Computing - Dept of Science
+353 0 51302056
B17A 1969 - Main Building
Dr. Catherine O’Reilly obtained a B.A. (Mod) in Genetics from Trinity College Dublin in 1978 and stayed on in the Genetics Department for her Ph.D Following this she spent two years at the Max Planck Institute in Cologne followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at Durham University. In 1986 Catherine was appointed as lecturer in molecular genetics at the University of Sunderland. Since coming to Waterford Institute of Technology in 1995 Catherine’s research interests have expanded into the area of molecular ecology. In collaboration with Dr. Peter Turner at WIT as well as numerous external collaborators the Molecular Ecology Group at WIT has developed a range of novel DNA analysis techniques to monitor a wide range of mammals with a particular emphasis on pine marten.
Peer reviewed publications
Riley,M., C.O'Reilly and D.J. McConnell. 1983. Physical map of Salmonella typhimurium in the vicinity of the proA gene. J.Bacteriol. 157:655-657.
O'Reilly,C., P.D.Turner, P.F. Smith-Keary and D.J. McConnell. 1984. Molecular cloning of genes involved in purine biosynthetic and salvage pathways of Salmonella typhimurium. Mol.Gen.Genet. 196:152-157.
O'Reilly, C., N.S. Shepherd, A. Pereira, Zs. Schwarz-Sommer, I.Bertram, D.S. Robertson, P.A. Peterson and H.Saedler. 1985. Molecular cloning of the a1 locus of Zea mays using the transposable elements En and Mu1.EMBO J. 4:877-882.
O'Reilly, C., N.S. Shepherd, A. Pereira, Zs. Schwarz-Sommer, U. Niesbach, U. Weydemann, U. Wienand, D.S. Robertson, P.A. Peterson and H. Saedler. 1985. The use of Spm(En) and Mu transposable elements for molecular analysis of the A1 and C2 loci. Maize Genetics Co-op Newsletter 59: 39.
O'Reilly, C., R.A. Spencer, A. Pereira and H. Saedler. 1986, Analysis of the transposable element ruq in Zea mays. Biol. Chem. Hoppe-Seyler 367 (Supplement):146
Sorrentino, J.J., C. O'Reilly, Zs. Schwarz-Sommer, H. Saedler and N.S. Shepherd. 1987. Sequence characteristics of the rDt controlling element. Maize Genetics Co-op Newsletter 61: 103.
O'Reilly, C., R. Laffey, G.W. Black and D.J. McConnell. 1988 Molecular analysis of an IS200 insertion in the gpt gene of Salmonella typhimurium. Absracts of SGM 111th Symposium p46
Brown, J.J., M.G. Mattes, C.O'Reilly and N.S. Shepherd. 1989 Characterisation of rDt, a maize transposon of the "Dotted" controlling element system. Mol.Gen.Genet. 215:239-244
O'Reilly, C, R. Laffey, G.W.Black and D.J. McConnell. 1990 Molecular analysis of an IS200 insertion in the gpt gene of Salmonella typhimurium. J. Bacteriol. 172:6599-6601
Black, G.W., C.M. Lyons, J.Colby, E.Williams, M.Kehoe and C.O'Reilly. 1989 Molecular analysis of the genes involved in the production of CO oxidoreductase from Pseudomonas thermocarboxydovorans. Proceedings of 6th International Symposium on Microbial Growth on C1 Compounds. P304.
Cluness, M., P.Turner and C.O'Reilly. 1989 Molecular analysis of the cyanide hydratase encoding gene of Fusarium lateritium. Proceedings of 6th International Symposium on Microbial Growth on C1 Compounds. P307.
Black, G.W., C.M. Lyons, E.Williams, J.Colby, M.Kehoe and C.O'Reilly. 1989 Cloning and expression of the carbon monoxide dehydrogenase genes from Pseudomonas thermocarboxydovorans strain C2. FEMS Microbiol. Lett. 70:249-254
O’Reilly, C., J. Colby, D.M. Pearson and G.W. Black. 1991. Molecular Genetics of carbon monoxide dehydrogenase in Microbial growth on C1 compounds (eds. Murrell and Kelly) pp461-468. Intercept Ltd. Andover, UK.
Cluness, M.J., P.D.Turner, E. Clements and C.O'Reilly. 1993. Purification and properties of the cyanide hydratase from Fusarium lateritium and analysis of the corresponding chy 1 gene J. Gen. Micro. 139: 1807-1815.
Pearson, D.M., C. O’Reilly, J. Colby and G.W. Black. 1994. DNA sequence of the cut A, B, and C genes, encoding the molybdenum containing hydroxylase carbon monoxide dehydrogenase from Pseudomonas thermocarboxydovorans strain C2.Biochim. Biophy. Acta 1188: 432-438.
Blakey, A.J., J.Colby, E. Williams and C. O’Reilly. 1995. Regio- and stereo-specific nitrile hydrolysis by the nitrile hydratase from Rhodococcus AJ270. FEMS Microbiol. Lett. 129: 57-62.
Brown, D.T., P.D. Turner and C.O’Reilly. 1995. Expression of the cyanide hydratase enzyme from Fusarium lateritium and identification of an essential cysteine residue. EMS Microbiol. Lett. 134: 143-146.
Nolan, L.M., Harnedy, P.A., Turner, P., Hearne, A. and C. O’Reilly. 2003. The cyanide hydratase enzyme of Fusarium lateritium also has nitrilase activity. FEMS Microbiol.Letts. 221:161-165.
O’Reilly, C. and P.D. Turner. 2003. The nitrilase family of CN hydrolysing enzymes – a comparative study. J.Applied Micro. 95, 1161-1174
Doran, J.P., Duggan, P., Masterson, M., Turner, P.D., & O'Reilly, C. 2005. Expression and purification of a recombinant enantioselective amidase. Protein Expr Purif, 40(1), 190-196.
O'Mahony, R., Doran, J., Coffey, L., Cahill, O.J., Black, G.W., & O'Reilly, C. 2005. Characterisation of the nitrile hydratase gene clusters of Rhodococcus erythropolis strains AJ270 and AJ300 and Microbacterium sp. AJ115 indicates horizontal gene transfer and reveals an insertion of IS1166. Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek, 87, 221-232.
Statham,M., Turner,P.D. and O'Reilly,C. (2005) Use of PCR amplification and restriction enzyme digestion of mitochondrial D-loop for identification of mustelids in Ireland. Irish Naturalists' Journal 28, 1-6.
Statham,M., Turner,P.D. and O'Reilly,C. (2007) Molecular sex identification of the mustelids Mustela erminea, Mustela vison, Martes martes, Meles meles and Lutra lutra,. Zoological Studies 45, 600-608.
Song, L., Yuan, H., Coffey, L., Doran, J., Wang, M.X. Qian, S. and O’Reilly, C. (2008) Efficient expression in E. coli of an enantioselective nitrile hydratase from Rhodococcus erythropolis AJ270. Biotechnology Letters 30, 755-762
O’Reilly, C., Statham, M, Mullins, J., Turner, P.D. and O’Mahony, D. (2008) Efficient species identification of pine marten (Martes martes) and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) scats using a 5’ nuclease real-time PCR assay. Conservation Genetics 9, 735-738.
Moran, S, Turner, P., and O'Reilly, C. (2008) Non-invasive genetic identification of small mammal species using real-time PCR. Molecular Ecology Resources 8, 1267–1269.
McDevitt, A.D. Edwards, C.J., O’Toole, P., O’Reilly, C. and Carden, R.F. (2009) Genetic structure of, and hybridization between, red (Cervus elaphus) and sika (Cervus nippon) deer in Ireland. Mammalian Biology 74, 263-273.
Moran, S., Turner, P. D. and O'Reilly, C. (2009) Multiple paternity in the European hedgehog. Journal of Zoology 278, 349-353.
Coffey L, Clarke A, Duggan P, Tambling K, Horgan S, Dowling D, O'Reilly C. (2009) Isolation of identical nitrilase genes from multiple bacterial strains and real-time PCR detection of the genes from soils provides evidence of horizontal gene transfer. Arch Microbiol. , 191, 761-771
O’Connor L, O’Leary M, Egan J, Leonard N, Coffey L, Godinho M, O’Reilly C, J.Egan and O’Mahony R (2010) The characterisation of Listeria sp. isolated from food products and the food-processing environment. Lett Appl Microbiol, 51, 490-498.
Coffey L, Owens E, Tambling K, O’Neill D, O’Connor L, O’Reilly C (2010) Real-time PCR detection of Fe-type nitrile hydratase genes from environmental isolates suggests horizontal gene transfer between multiple genera. Antonie van Leeuwenhoek 98, 4: 455-463.
Mullins, J, Statham, M.J., Roche, T. Turner, P.D. and O’Reilly, C. (2010) Remotely plucked hair genotyping: a reliable and non-invasive method for censusing pine marten (Martes martes, L. 1758) populations. Eur J Wildl Res 56:443–453
O’Meara, D.B., Turner, P.D., Coffey, L., and O’Reilly, C. (2012) TaqMan assays for species identification of the red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) and the grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) . Conservation Genetics Resources 4: 603-604.
O’ Mahony, D., Turner, P., and O’ Reilly, C. (2012) Pine marten (Martes martes) distribution and range in Ireland: Conservation inaction from a cross-jurisdictional perspective. Mammalian Biology 7:, 351–357
Jordan, N.R,. Messenger, J., Turner, P., Croose, E., Birks,, J., O'Reilly, C. (2012) Molecular comparison of historical and contemporary pine marten (Martes martes) populations in the British Isles: evidence of differing origins and fates, and implications for conservation management. . Conservation Genetics 13:1195-1212.
Coady. T. Coffey, L., Owens, E. O’Reilly, C. and Lennon, C. (2013) A high throughput screening strategy for the assessment of nitrile-hydrolyzing activity towards the production of enantiopure β-hydroxy acids. Journal of Molecular Catalysis B: Enzymatic 97: 150-155.
O’Meara DB, Turner PD, Coffey L, O’Reilly C (2012) TaqMan assays for species identification of the red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) and the grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis). Conservation Genetics Resources, 4, 603-604.
O’Meara DB, Edwards CJ, Sleeman DP, Cross TF, Statham MJ, Mcdowell JR, Dillane E, Coughlan JP, O’Leary D, O’Reilly C, Bradley, DG, Carlsson J (2012) Genetic structure of Eurasian badgers Meles meles (Carnivora: Mustelidae) and the colonization history of Ireland. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 106, 893-909.
Sheehy E, O’Meara DB, O’Reilly C, Smart A, Lawton C (2014) A non-invasive approach to determining pine marten abundance and predation. European Journal of Wildlife Research 60: 223-236.
White S, O’Neill D, O’Meara DB, Shores C, Harrington AP, O’Reilly C, Weyman G and Sleeman DP (2013) A non-invasive genetic survey of otters (Lutra lutra) in an urban environment: A pilot study with citizen scientists. IUCN Otter Specialist Group Bulletin. 30/02.
O’Meara DB, Sheehy E, Turner PD, O’Mahony D, Harrington AP, Denman H, Lawton C, MacPherson J and O’Reilly C (2013). Non-invasive multispecies monitoring – Real-time PCR detection of squirrel and small mammal prey DNA in pine marten (Martes martes) scats. Acta Theriologica, 59: 111-117.
O’Neill D, Turner PD, O’Meara DB, Chadwick E, Coffey L and O’Reilly C (2013). Development of novel real-time TaqMan PCR assays for the species and sex identification of otter (Lutra lutra) and their application to non-invasive genetic monitoring. Molecular Ecology Resources, 13: 877–883.
Coady. T. Coffey, L., Owens, E. O’Reilly, C. and Lennon, C. (2014) Substrate evaluation of Rhodococcus erythropolis SET1, a nitrile hydrolyzing bacterium, demonstrating dual activity strongly dependent on nitrile substructure. European Journal of Organic Chemitsry, 2014, In press
O’Mahony, D.T. Turner P. and O’Reilly, C. (2014) Non-invasive surveys for elusive species – The pine marten in an isolated refuge. European Journal of Wildlife Research In press
Morris C, O’Reilly C, Turner P, Halliwell L, O’Meara DB and Sheerin E. (2013) A novel non-invasive method for detecting the harvest mouse (Micromys minutus). Mammal News – Autumn
O’Meara DB (2013) Wildlife Detective. Walton Magazine, Issue 4. This article also appeared in Junior Scientist, Issue 1.
O’Meara DB, Turner PD, O’Neill D, Coffey L, Harrington A, O’Reilly C (2012) The genetic toolbox for squirrel surveys. Mammal News – Autumn
University of Sunderland Lecturer/Senior Lecturer 1986 to 1992
University of Sunderland Reader in Molecular Genetics 1992 to 1995
WIT Lecturer/Senior Lecturer 1995 to date
Biochemical Society, Member 1985-2003.
Society for General Microbiology Member 1985-2014
Society for General Microbiology Irish Branch Committee member 1998-2006
Society for General Microbiology Convener Irish Branch Committee 2001-2006
Society for General Microbiology Council Member 2006-2010
The Mammal Society Member 2002-
The Mammal Society Council member 2009-2014