Dr Donnellan has a BSc (Hons) in Medical Biochemistry from the University of Glasgow and an MSc from the University of Edinburgh.
Samantha's PhD at Heriot Watt University/Moredun Research Institute was to develop a rapid, low cost assay suitable for screening the anti-mycobacterial properties of nanoparticles (NPs) against mycobacteria. Solid drug NPs (SDNs) of the first line TB antibiotics were developed and screened in the assay and compared to conventional antibiotics. Additionally, the efficacy of the SDNs was monitored intracellularly (within a mycobacterium infected macrophage) and imaged to determine whether these particles co-localised with the mycobacteria.
Before joining Edinburgh Napier, Samantha worked at The Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM). In 2020 she was a Key Worker in the fight against coronavirus through scientific research, working in drug discovery.
Samantha is an FSA Scientific Advisor (Committee on Toxicology), Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Fellow of the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. Samantha won LSTMs Director Catalyst Fund, allowing her to gain specialist training in South Africa (Molecular Mycobacteriology Research Unit at The University of Cape Town) and the USA (Harvard University) to focus on her own research - working with multi-drug resistant TB and developing a microfluidics device for sophisticated, dynamic drug screening.