Molly O'Reilly

Molly O'Reilly

If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile

Research interests

Molly O’Reilly – Curriculum Vitae


2014 - 2018 – University of Sussex - Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Neuroscience

Prevention of Aminoglycoside Antibiotic-Induced Ototoxicity of Auditory Hair Cells via Block of Mechano-Electrical Transducer Channels or Intracellular Mechanisms

2011 - 2014 – University of Sussex – BSc. (Hons.) Neuroscience with Cognitive Science - First class

2003 - 2010 – King Edwards VI Grammar School, Birmingham

A-level: Biology (A*), Physics (B), Psychology (A), General Studies (B)


Professional experience    

01/01/2022 – Present         University of Amsterdam      European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Fellow

Currently employed as an ESC Fellow, I primarily use electrophysiological techniques to investigate the contribution of neuronal dysfunction to cardiac arrhythmia conditions.

01/10/2018 – 30/11/2021           University of Birmingham            Post-Doctoral Research Fellow

Employed as a British Heart Foundation (BHF) Research Fellow, I used electrophysiological techniques to investigate the ionic basis of cardiac arrhythmias caused by genetic abnormalities or environmental stressors.

21/09/2014 – 21/08/2018             University of Sussex                               Doctoral Tutor

Employed as a Doctoral Tutor throughout my PhD, I completed over 200 hours of teaching alongside marking. Those I taught ranged in experience from undergraduates to MSc students. 


Publications (h-index 5, i10-index 5, citations 107)    -


O’Shea C, Winter J, Kabir S, O’Reilly M, et al. (2022). High-resolution optical mapping of cardiac electrophysiology in pre-clinical models. Sci Data 9, 135

O’Brien S, Holmes AP, Johnson DM, O’Shea C, O’Reilly M, et al. (2022). Increased Atrial Selectivity of Flecainide Conferred by Reduced Atrial Sodium Currents. J Mol Cell Cardiol; 166:23-35

Kunzel S, Hoffman M, Weber S… O’Reilly M, et al. (2021). Diminished PLK2 Induces Cardiac Fibrosis and Promotes Atrial Fibrillation. Circ Res; 129(8):804-820. International collaboration.

Holmes A, Saxena P, Kabir S… O’Reilly M, et al. (2021). The atrial resting membrane potential confers sodium current sensitivity to propafenone, flecainide and dronedarone. Heart Rhythm; 18(7):1212-1220.

Obergassel J, O’Reilly M, Sommerfeld L, et al. (2021). Effects of genetic background, sex and age on murine atrial electrophysiology. Europace; 19: euaa369.

O’Reilly M, Young L, Kirkwood NK, et al. (2019). Gentamicin Affects the Bioenergetics of Isolated Mitochondria and Collapses the Mitochondrial Membrane Potential in Cochlear Sensory Hair Cells. Front. Cell. Neurosci. 13:416.

O'Reilly M, Kirkwood NK, Kenyon EJ, et al. (2019). Design, synthesis and biological evaluation of a new series of carvedilol derivatives that protect sensory hair cells from aminoglycoside-induced damage by blocking the mechano-electrical transducer channel. J. Med. Chem. 62(11):5312-5329.

Jeong M, O'Reilly M, Kirkwood NK, et al. (2018). Generating inner ear organoids containing putative cochlear hair cells from human pluripotent stem cells. Cell Death & Disease. 922(9). 2041-4889.

Kenyon EJ, Kirkwood NK, Kitcher SR, O'Reilly M, et al. (2017). Identification of ion-channel modulators that protect against aminoglycoside-induced hair cell death. JCI Insight. 2:96773.

Kirkwood NK, O’Reilly M, Derudas M, et al. (2017). d-Tubocurarine and berbamine: alkaloids that are permeant blockers of the hair cell’s mechano-electrical transducer channel and protect from aminoglycoside toxicity. Front. Cell. Neurosci. 11:262.


Publications under review/in preparation

O’Reilly M, Sommerfeld LC, O’Shea C, et al. The novel SCN5A point mutation M1875T is associated with familial atrial fibrillation and causes a gain-of-function effect in murine models. (under review BioPhysical Journal)

Al-Maswary A, O’Reilly M, Holmes AP, et al. Neurogenic modulation of dental pulp stem cells through activating MAPK signalling pathway. (under review PLOS ONE)

Reyat J*, O’Reilly M*, O’Shea C, et al. PITX2 deficiency in iPSC derived atrial cardiomyocytes reveals an arrhythmogenic phenotype. (in preparation)

O’Reilly M, O’Shea C, Wells S, et al. Succinate and Exposure to Hypoxia-Reoxygenation cause similar Pro-Arrhythmic Modifications in Left Atrial Electrophysiology. (in preparation)

O’Reilly M, Derudas M, Kirkwood N, et al. Structure Activity Relationship of FM1-43: a permeant blocker of the hair cell’s mechano-electrical transducer channel. (in preparation)

Prizes and Awards

Vector Labs Science Photography Competition finalist (20/01/2018) and winner (20/01/2019)

Sussex University Research Image Competition Exhibition winner – 16/06/2018

Don Henderson Award – 12/02/2018  

University of Sussex PhD Prize runner-up – 08/12/2017


Personal funding

Amsterdam UMC Postdoc Career Bridging Grant - €105,000 – March 2022

  • Targeting neuronal dysfunction to prevent sudden cardiac death in inherited arrhythmia syndromes

Erasmus+ staff mobility award - €1,300 – November 2021

  • To enhance the pre-established collaboration between the Universities of Birmingham and Amsterdam

British Heart Foundation (BHF) Accelerator Award - £8,500 – May 2021

  • SCN5A mutation-induced arrhythmias: cardiac or neuronal in origin?”

European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Basic Research Fellowship - €25,000 – February 2021

  • “The effects of ‘cardiac’ mutations on neuronal electrophysiology”

Medical Intercalation Student Project proposals - £4,200 – September 2020

  • “Investigating the effects of AMP-activated protein kinase activators on cardiac electrophysiology”

Research Development Fund Award - £4,800 – February 2020

  • “Does cardiac nerve stimulation cause atrial arrhythmia following ischaemia/reperfusion?”


During my PhD I presented at 8 conferences and independently secured external funding towards the cost of attendance, from at least one source on every occasion. The funding bodies that provided Travel Awards were:


  • Association for Research in Otolaryngology - £500 (01/01/2016), £750 (01/02/2018)
  • University of Sussex Postgraduate Fund - £650 (01/09/2017)
  • Physiological Society – £500 (01/01/2016), £500 (01/08/2016), £500 (01/01/2017)
  • Action on Hearing Loss - £200 (01/04/2016)
  • National Institute of Health - £1000 (01/08/2016)


Invited oral presentations

‘The SCN5A point mutation M1875T, associated with familial atrial fibrillation, causes a gain-of-function effect of the cardiac Nav1.5 channel in atrial cardiomyocytes’

– European Heart Rhythm Association (EHRA) congress (online), 24/04/2021

‘The Effects of Hypoxia and Reoxygenation on Cardiac Electrophysiology’

– Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences Away Day, Birmingham, UK, 03/05/2019

‘XE 991, a KV7 channel blocker, acts as an otoprotectant in vitro

– British Neuroscience Association (BNA) Festival of Neuroscience, Birmingham, UK, 10/04/2017


Teaching and Supervising

Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA), 01/06/2016.

  • During my post-doctoral position, I supervised a third-year medical intercalation student whom I attained wet lab funding for (First class); I have taught undergraduate students in Cardiovascular Systems; supervised multiple PhD students within the laboratory; and taught visiting international postdoctoral researchers in cardiovascular sciences lab techniques.
  • Employed as a Doctoral Tutor throughout my PhD, I completed over 200 hours of teaching alongside marking. Students ranged in expertise from first year undergraduates to MSc students.



  • Post-doctoral and Early Research Career Development and Training (PERCAT) - Cardiovascular Sciences representative (2018-2021).
  • Public outreach: In 2019 I engaged with the Green Heart project, supervising the BHF stall and showcasing research outputs whilst engaging and educating the public as to the work that the charity supports.
  • Private science tutor at Tutor Hunt.


Professional Society Memberships

Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy; Affiliate member of the Physiological Society; European Society of Cardiology; European Working Group of Cellular Cardiac Electrophysiology.


Academic Citizenship 

Reviewer for: The Journal of Pharmacological and Experimental Therapeutics; The Journal of Membrane Biology; The International Journal of Cardiovascular Imaging; Heart Rhythm.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being