• Question: why did you want to work with poo

    Asked by ciaramolloy to Kev, Enda on 11 Nov 2012.
    • Photo: Enda O'Connell

      Enda O'Connell answered on 11 Nov 2012:


      At the moment I don’t work with poo, mainly cells grown in little dishes in an incubator. I used to work with bacteria and do work with blood from time to time, while one of my colleagues works with urine and one even works with hair!

      However, Janus the robot would be an ideal tool to use when working with poo, as all of the work can be carried out behind glass using robotic arms and it can be completely sterilised afterwards.

      If Kevin ever wants to visit Galway, he’s more than welcome to try it out!

    • Photo: Kevin Lomasney

      Kevin Lomasney answered on 12 Nov 2012:


      Ha ha! I was waiting for this question! As you can imagine, I get a lot of slagging!!! However, despite the horrible nature of working with poo, the bowel is an incredibly interesting and important organ. When your bowel becomes ill, you can’t absorb food properly, your immune system becomes very weak, it can even affect your brain!!!!
      Outside of science I am very interested in sport, and for sport, food is very important, and to get the most out of your food you need a healthy bowel! The carbohydrates and fats that give you energy, the proteins to build your muscles, even some of the fluid and minerals to keep you hydrated, these are all managed by your bowel. That is why many people with bowel diseases can become very weak. I know of rugby players who have lost most of their muscles because of bowel sickness. Can you imagine?! Also, anybody know Darren Fletcher?? Nothing in your body will work properly if you don’t have a good bowel to take up the fuel and building blocks they need! This is the main reason I am interested in the bowel and why I don’t mind working with poo so much!

      Oh and thanks Enda, maybe I’ll take you up on that!!!