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PDA Ireland Chapter

Declan Quinlan

President: Declan Quinlan

MSD Ireland

2019 Student Bursary (Scholarship opportunity)



Thank you for connecting to the PDA Irish Chapter page.

As a registered non-profit affiliate of PDA International; our aim is to serve as a networking forum for manufacturers, young professionals, academia and service providers engaged in the pharmaceutical/ biopharmaceutical industry in Ireland.

The activities of our chapter can be summarised as follows:

  • Provide events and processes to facilitate sharing of best practices, technologies and regulations to meet the tactical and strategic needs of you; our members.
  • Facilitate collaboration with regulators and other representative bodies to achieve alignment and cohesiveness across the industry.
  • Provide a great networking opportunity for you; our members to connect with like-minded professionals, subject matter experts and regulators.

Our success depends on the willingness of our volunteers to share experiences, plan & organise events, engage in PDA interest groups or contribute to future technical reports.

Remember we all face similar opportunities and challenges; our chapter network can strengthen our ability to face these with confidence.

Le chéile tá muid níos láidre (Together we are stronger),

Join today!!!
Declan Quinlan, President Irish Chapter


Thank you to our 2019 Chapter Sponsors

Diamond Sponsors

  • Bioquell
  • Cherwell
  • Elis
  • PMT
  • Source Bioscience
  • Thermal Compliance

Bronze Sponsors

  • Charles River
  • Fraser Technologies
  • Pharmalex
  • SteriTech Limited
  • Veltek

Upcoming Chapter Events


PDA Signature Events




Declan Quinlan

Declan Quinlan
Operations Director
MSD Ireland (Carlow)

Ann McGe

Ann McGee
Managing Director
PharmaLex Ireland

Aidan Harrington

Aidan Harrington
Senior Consultant
DPS Global

Paul Hawkins

Paul Hawkins
Quality Director
Avadel Pharmaceuticals

Sponsorship and Events Manager
Elizabeth Hunt

Elizabeth Hunt
Marketing Specialist
PharmaLex Ireland


Chapter News

Quality Culture and Young Professionals Event Held at Sanofi, Waterford

Dr. Katrin WinklerDr Katrin Winkler (left) delivers her presentation on how culture and behaviours drive organisations at the PDA YP event in Sanofi Waterford on November 14th, 2018

5 Takeaway points for the Event

  • Quality and excellence are values relevant in all parts of the business - from engineering to process improvement and project management
  • The essence of a culture of quality and excellence is shaped by people and leadership
  • A culture of control and regulation will not instil quality and excellence
  • Strategy and Guidelines can create a framework of quality and excellence
  • Engagement in quality and excellence is not a one day endeavour but a continuous journey



Advances in Aseptic Processing with a Focus on Media Fill Simulations Event Summary

On October 4th, over 90 registered delegates attended the PDA Ireland Chapter “Advances in Aseptic processing with a focus on Media Fill simulations”. This event was hosted at the Clayton Hotel Dublin Airport. This event was emceed by Catherine McHugh, PAREXEL Consulting.

The following topics presented during the morning session:

  • “Updates to Annex 1 and issues with Training of Operators” presented by Greg McGurk, Regeneron,
  • “Proficiency-based Progression Training” presented by Tony Gallagher, UCC
  • “Principles of Good Learning Design” presented by Emmett Cullinan, Sanofi
  •  “Expectations for an Aseptic Manufacturing Qualification Program” presented by Valerie Mulholland, GMP Services.

The early afternoon session focused on

  • “Isolator Glove Management” presented by Aidan Harrington, DPS Group
  •  “The Future of Aseptic Processing” presented by Marco Delgado Rueda, PAREXEL Consulting.

During the afternoon session, the attendees were split into smaller groups for round table discussions. This proved to be a more engaging and interactive format for peer-to-peer learning. The topics discussed were:

  • Process simulation
  • Contamination Control strategies
  • Training
  • Annex 1
  • and Visual Inspections

The topics presented stimulated a significant amount of discussion and the outcome of the discussions positively reached a wide audience.

Key Takeaways:

  • Appropriate knowledge and preparation for Annex 1
  • Identifying issues with Training Employees
  • Supervisors role when training team members
  • Completing an operation to proficiency
  • Identifying realistic training time frame


2018 Student Bursary Winner, Shane Murphy reflects on the PDA EU 3rd Annual Meeting

2018 Bursary Winner Shane Murphy

 Along with Aiofe Clancy, I was also granted the opportunity to attend the   Parenteral Drug Association Europe (PDA EU) 3rd Annual Meeting.   Initially, I was nervous and unsure what to expect from my first PDA   Meeting. However, my nerves were soon replaced with excitement when   I meet the PDA Ireland Chapter officers and PDA EU staff members.

I thoroughly enjoyed the topic discussed during Session 3 Track B – 
"Why Better Human Understanding is the Only Future" presented   by Craig Scott, Greensand. The presentation highlighted the importance  of prioritizing the human element of resolving the customers’ needs above all  other variables.

The other speaker presentations broadened my knowledge of current advancements in the industry, guided my awareness to resolve potential flaws in a system, and create innovative ideas to continuously develop the industry

During the lunch breaks, I was grateful to connect with professionals in the industry who provided more insight on their career experiences. 

The topics I learned at the EU Annual Meeting will be applied to my future career in Microbiology. I intend to focus my career within the Disease, Diagnostics, and Immunology sector.

I would highly recommend other university students to apply to the next Student Bursary program hosted by the PDA Ireland Chapter and PDA Europe staff members.


2018 Bursary Winner - Aoife Clancy shares PDA EU Annual experience

Aoife Clancy at PDA EU Annual MeetingThis June, I was fortunate enough to be awarded a Student Bursary from the Parenteral Drug Association Irish Chapter. The Bursary Award provided me with an opportunity to attend the PDA 3rd Annual Meeting in Berlin. I was extremely excited to attend the event and learn about the current demands within the global healthcare industry and advanced technologies and opportunities within the pharmaceutical industry.

I was welcomed warmly on the first day of the conference by the members of the Irish Chapter. They introduced me to their colleagues and other conference attendees, and I learned about the roles which they assumed in their respective companies.

The theme of the meeting, Global Healthcare of the Present and Future, was of great interest to me, given my background in Pharmacy. The meeting consisted of presentations from regulatory, industry and technology representatives from around the world. Since a lot of my experience comes from patient-facing roles, the talks on Patient Perspectives, personalised medicines and patient centricity appealed to me greatly. The Young Professionals Session of Day 2 was definitely a highlight of the meeting. Cristoph Marschall, who also completed an undergraduate degree in Pharmacy, presented on Protein Powder Suspensions and their viability as an alternative to conventional formulations. Cristoph spoke about problems associated with proteins due to their potential to aggregate, causing conformational changes. He discussed the issue of viscosity with non-aqueous formulations, which can present challenges during the injection process. I could really connect with this topic, having completed relevant modules during my time in Trinity College. Finally, the Multi Organ Chip Technologies presentation by Reyk Horland was very inspiring. It was exciting to hear about the ways in which safety and efficacy data can be generated much earlier in the drug development timeline.

To compliment the fantastic presentations at the meeting, the networking event on the first night afforded me with a memorable tour of Berlin via the channels of the city. We embarked on a cruise through the city - a very novel way to see the sights. This is a memory I will never forget.

I would like to extend my sincere thanks to PDA Ireland for awarding me the Student Bursary and providing me the amazing opportunity to attend the European Annual Meeting. I learned so much, met so many incredible people, networked and found career inspiration.

PDA Ireland announce Bursary Winners

In partnership with PDA Europe, we have continued our commitment to provide educational development opportunities for students by producing our 2nd Bursary.

This year, we accepted applications to third level students (undergraduate and postgraduate). The bursary included a free ticket to the PDA Annual Meeting on 26 - 27 June 2018 in Berlin and 800 euro towards travel expenses and accommodation.

We are proud to announce the names of our 2018 Bursary recipients: Shane Murphy and Aoife Clancy.

Shane Murphy
Shane Murphy

Shane Murphy is currently studying Bioanalysis at the Institute of Technology in Tallaght (Dublin), Ireland. In September, Shane will return to college to complete his Bachelor Honours Degree. "I entered the bursary as I wanted to expand my knowledge of the Pharmaceutical industry, and see first hand the new innovative ideas and techniques used today."The bursary also provides young scientists like myself a chance to network and network with like-minded individuals.

I am in currently living in Germany for a research internship studying Bone Regeneration and Extracellular vesicles as diagnostic markers in Leipzig, East Germany. I'm really looking forward to traveling to Berlin and attending the PDA conference.

Aoife Clancy
Ann McGe

Aoife Clancy recently completed her final year exams in Trinity College Dublin and will graduate with a First Class Honours B.Sc.(Pharmacy) degree. Aoife is currently working with a summer research internship position at Trinity and will commence her Masters in Pharmacy placement in St. James's Hospital in September.

Over the last four years, I have spent my time gaining experience in both the hospital and community pharmacy settings, enhancing my clinical knowledge. My time in hospital pharmacy heightened my interest in biological medicines, sterile manufacturing, and continuity of supply (following the pipericillin-tazobactam shortage of 2016).





Exhibit at PDA Ireland Events

Maximize your company's exposure to key decision-makers in the pharmaceutical and Bio-pharmaceutical industries as an exhibitor and/or sponsor at PDA Ireland events.

 Meet potential buyers and take advantage of the opportunity to:

  • Gain access to industry leaders to establish and develop important relationships
  • Get exposure in front of your target audience
  • Showcase new products and services
  • Generate visibility and valuable leads
  • Convert leads into new business
  • Create brand awareness

Diamond Sponsor

(Maximum 3 sponsors)

Per Year

  • A full exhibitors table at all PDA Events (approx 3-4 per year)
  • Company name & logo & weblink on PDA Ireland website
  • Company name & logo on promotional material for PDA events
  • Company name & logo in PDA quarterly newsletter plus 50 word statement
  • 4 x Complimentary event registrations
  • Special thank you by event MC
  • Logo appearance on hold screens during coffee and lunch breaks
  • 6 Social media promotions on PDA social media platforms

Gold Sponsor

(Maximum 5 sponsors)

Per Year

  • Exhibitor table at 1 PDA Event
  • Company logo and name & weblink  on PDA Ireland website (1 month)
  • Company name & logo on PDA promotional material
  • Company name & logo in PDA quarterly newsletter plus 50 word statement
  • 4 Social media promotions
  • 2 x complimentary event registrations
  • Special thank you by event MC

Bronze Sponsor


Per Year

  • Exhibitors table at 1 PDA Event
  • Company name & logo on PDA promotional material
  • 2 Social media promotions
  • 2 x complimentary event registrations
  • Special thank you by event MC

Caitriona Murphy

Caitriona Murphy

Consultant Qualified Person - Biotech Operations, Eli Lilly, Kinsale Co. Cork
Member since
Featured Volunteer, April

President's Message

Welcome back and I hope you all had a great start to 2019. I can’t believe its six months since our first newsletter.

It was a very busy and successful finish to 2018 for the chapter hosting three great events;

  • The first was ‘ Aseptic Processing with a focus on Media Fill Simulations’ – case studies & discussion” on 04th October in the Clayton Hotel, Dublin Airport. This event was    booked to capacity and certainly didn’t disappoint. It had a great diversity of speakers providing excellent perspectives from within and beyond our industry in the form of Tony Gallagher who shared his perspective on training and assessing competency of surgeons – I still haven’t got the list of which surgeons passed his assessments!!
  • Then there was our  “Rise of outsourcing in the Pharma Industry & managing change activities” on 22nd November in the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Blanchardstown, Dublin. This event was combined with our AGM  and included a number of break-out sessions which facilitated great sharing, networking and discussion as did the music and drinks reception afterwards.
  • The third event was our Quality Culture Young Professionals event hosted by Sanofi in Waterford. Key note speaker for this event was Dr Katrin Winkler who gave an excellent presentation on “How Culture and Behaviour drive an organisation”. Two of our YP members (the two Shanes!!) facilitated discussions sharing their career experiences and benefits of membership.

Planning is well underway for 2019 with three events in the works in the first half of the year (do visit our chapter page at  or our LinkedIn page for further details).

These events have been selected based on your feedback at the AGM in November.

  • The first event  EU GMP Annex 1  will be held on 3rd May in the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Blanchardstown, Dublin. Annex 1 continues to be a key topic of discussion for our industry and the presentations/ discussion topics in this event are centred around responses from a questionnaire circulated to you; our members earlier this year. Ciara Turley from the HPRA will be a keynote speaker at this event.
  • The second is “Implementation strategies for QRM” in the Radisson in Little Island, Cork. Kevin O’Donnell from the HPRA is our keynote speaker and a number of industry speakers will be sharing their implementation experiences followed by a panel discussion.
  • Following on the success of the Sanofi YP event, a similar event is planned in MSD Carlow in May.

Our communication & marketing workstream driven by Elizabeth continues to exceed our expectations. This has led to continued engagement by sponsors allowing us to further invest and improve our events with a number of new sponsors coming on-board for 2019.  Additionally, we have seen very significant growth in our LinkedIn and Twitter presence.

None of the above would be possible without our dedicated committee/ event organising teams who continue to raise the bar to ensure we meet the expectations of our members, attendees and sponsors.

Finally, a very sincere thanks to you; the members of our Irish chapter who continue to contribute to our success and provide us with feedback to ensure we continue to strive to meet and exceed your expectations,

Le chéile tá muid níos láidre (Together we are stronger),
Declan Quinlan,
President Irish Chapter

Thank you to our 2019 Chapter Sponsors


More News Items

PDA Ireland recently sponsored the Salters Festival of Chemistry

The Salters Institute hosted The Salters festival to promote the appreciation of chemistry and related sciences among adolescent students. The initiative also showcases careers in the chemical and allied industries and teaching field.

On the 21st of April, students from 20 schools from the province of Leinster enjoyed an exciting day of scientific exploration at the Salters' Festival of Chemistry, at the Salters Institute, School of Chemistry.

Teams of four 11-13 year-olds represented their school in three chemistry focused experiments and challenges.

The students competed in their first challenge called The Salters Challenge The Blot Strokes Again to challenge their analytical chemistry skills. Next, the students were tasked to prepare a chemical recipe for composing seven different colors called the University Challenge. The day ended with an interactive Flashers and Bangs lecture.

PDA Ireland at Salters Festival

PDA Ireland Chapter Annex 1 Event, 17 May 2018

PDA Ireland Chapter Officers were delighted to attend the PDA conference on #Annex1 draft in Dublin on May 17th

PDA Annex 1 Event

Chapter Officers: (L) Declan Quinlan, Aidan Harrington, Greg McGurk, Falk Klar (PDA EU Vice President), and Ann McGee (R)

Annex 1 Event

PDA Ireland Chapter Cleaning Validation Event, 25 April, 2018

On April 25th over 100 people attended the PDA Cleaning Validation event in NIBRT to hear about the latest developments in relation to cleaning validation. Present on the day were representatives from the pharmaceutical industry and experts in the latest cleaning validation advances for pharmaceutical production. Case studies were presented with practical information on risk and science based approaches that showcase effective implementation on cleaning processes. The day also included a practical demonstration at NIBRT associated with equipment cleaning.

Cleaning Validation Event 2
Cleaning Validation Event
Cleaning Validation Event 3
Cleaning Validation Event 4

NIBRT Annual Careers Event

On April 14th 2018, PDA Ireland exhibited at the annual Careers in BioPharma event in NIBRT. Over 500 attendees came along on the day and had the opportunity to meet with PDA Ireland, and blue chip employers from the rapidly expanding Biopharma Industry in Ireland. The Irish biopharma industry continues to grow with 20 biologics manufacturing sites and $10 billion in capital investment in the last decade, the sector is forecast to add 8,400 new jobs up to 2020. Those who want to work within the biopharma sphere had an great opportunity to talk to people who work for some of major facilities. PDA is delighted to have exhibited at this event and meet with students and job seekers.

PDA Ireland Chapter at NIBRT

PDA Ireland networking with Ireland’s Young Professionals in Dublin

The PDA Ireland chapter hosted their first event for Young Professionals (YP’s) in Dublin’s Hilton Hotel Kilmainham on 22 March 2018. The event was designed as an opportunity for students and recent graduates to network with PDA members to learn more about the opportunities in the pharmaceutical business in Ireland and about the PDA. Students from each of  the third level colleges in the Dublin area attended as well as graduates from Amgen, Pfizer, BMS, and Allergan. Shane Costigan who was the recipient of the 2017 bursary to the European PDA conference presented on his PDA journey over the past 12 months. The attendees provided positive feedback on the event and we hope to arrange similar events in other parts of the country later in the year.

yp event 2
YP Event