Dr Abigail Martin
As a qualified horse-riding instructor my experience with horses, their incurred injuries, and diseases spurred my curiosity to understand biology for enhanced quality of life in animals. With a Biotechnology degree from the National University of Ireland, Galway, a research position in Canada allowed me to combine my knowledge of equines and science exploring reproductive toxicology, where we identified translatable results to early-stage pregnancies in women. I embarked on a Masters in Toxicology and with an interest to learn about clinical toxicology. Employed and mentored by a hospital consultant. I learnt first-hand the challenges scientists and clinicians face when comparing animal studies to humans.
Knowing there had to be a better approach to understanding the toxic effects of chemicals on humans, it was during this time I met Victoria. Our scientific visions were closely aligned, and she became my PhD supervisor. At the University of Hertfordshire, I developed a human in vitro model of the lower airways, reducing animal use for testing purposes. In the final year of my PhD, an opportunity to validate my technology's commercial needs came about through the ICURe (Innovation to Commercialisation of University Research) programme. I began the career change of a lifetime becoming an entrepreneur, starting up the company ImmuONE, building ImmuONE's incredible team and, driving its mission and goals. No two days are the same, and I enjoy it!
When I am not working for ImmuONE, I love to visit my family and friends in Ireland. In more recent times, I mentor budding entrepreneurs on innovation programmes and, at home, enjoy upcycling furniture, gardening and cooking.