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Dr. Fitzgerald is Professor and Vice Chair of Medicine, Chief of the Division of Innate Immunity, and the Worcester Foundation in Biomedical Sciences Research Chair. Dr. Fitzgerald completed all of her education in Ireland. She received her B.Sc. in Biochemistry in 1995 from University College Cork, Ireland and her PhD in Biochemistry in 1999 from Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. After pursing a post-doctoral fellowship at Trinity College Dublin, she joined UMass Chan as Instructor and is currently a tenured Professor.
Dr. Fitzgerald is an elected fellow of the American Society of Microbiology and an elected member of the Royal Irish Academy, the National Academy of Sciences (USA) and the National Academy of Medicine (USA). She is the recipient of several awards including the Thermo-Fischer Meritorious Career Award (from the American Association of Immunology), the Saint Patrick’s Day Medal (from the Irish Government and Science Foundation Ireland) and the Milstein Award for Excellence in Interferon and Cytokine research (from the International Cytokine and Interferon Society), amongst others.
She has extensive service both locally at UMass Chan and nationally including service on local and national advisory boards (e.g., Massachusetts Center For Pathogen Readiness, NIAID Board of Scientific Councillors, Burroughs Wellcome Fund Pathogenesis of Infectious Diseases and the Cancer Research Institute). She was also the recent past President of the International Cytokine and Interferon Society.
Research Information Her work is focused on the innate immune system aimed at understanding the molecular basis of the inflammatory response during Infection and in inflammatory diseases. In particular her group studies nucleic acid sensors, inflammasomes as well as long non-coding RNAs in immunity and inflammation. The long-term goal of her work is to determine how innate immune sensing and signaling contribute to infectious, inflammatory, and autoimmune diseases in humans.