Dr Sean Mackay BSc(Hons), PhD

Chemist and Nanoscale Materials Scientist

Dr Mackay is a chemist and nanoscale materials scientist. He is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Otago in Dunedin and an Honorary Research Associate at the Gillies McIndoe Research Institute (GMRI).

Sean completed a BSc(Hons) at the University of Otago in 2012 specialising in applied surfactant chemistry, and a PhD in 2017 at the same university in the area of nanoscale drug delivery systems for the treatment of neurological diseases. He received a KiwiNet Emerging Innovator Award in 2016 to develop efficient skin penetrating nanoparticles for strawberry birthmarks. His research has since received significant support from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and Callaghan Innovation. In 2018, he joined the Science Advisory Board of Wellington-based biotechnology company Humblebee to develop environmentally sustainable alternatives to fluorinated plastics.

Dr Mackay’s main areas of research focus on nanoscale neural interfaces for the improved treatment of brain disorders, mechanically-responsive drug eluting hydrogels, and efficient skin penetrating nanoparticles for dermal disorders. With the GMRI he is focused on creating safer and more effective ways to treat strawberry birthmarks and other related disfiguring conditions.