Osteoarthritis (OA) is a joint disorder which is predominantly found in elderly individuals (Lee et al., 2013), but has recently been linked to sports participation at high levels (Vannini et al., 2016). As a result, OA afflicts millions of individuals across the world resulting in impaired quality of life and increased health costs (Lee et al., 2013). While a number of risk factors have been associated with OA, the pathophysiology of this disease is currently in its infancy in particular the effects in which OA has upon skeletal muscle.
Understanding what contributes to the pathophysiology of OA can be difficult to perform in human subjects and the use of animal models with OA has ethical implications. Therefore, the use of in vitro models could provide a useful tool for studying OA at the cellular and molecular level. In particular, the use of tissue engineered skeletal muscle models have been applied to investigating various aspects of skeletal muscle physiology (Player et al., 2014; Martin et al., 2017).
The project will involve the use of established tissue engineered skeletal muscle models to characterise models of skeletal muscle OA and how interventions (e.g. nutritional, or exercise) affect skeletal muscle function and physiology at the molecular level in an in vitro model of OA.
Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent) in sport and exercise science, human physiology, human biology, biochemistry or a related subject. A relevant master’s degree and/or experience in one or more of the above subjects will be an advantage. All students must also meet the minimum English Language requirements A relevant master's degree and / or experience in one or more of the following will be an advantage: Human biology, exercise physiology, biochemistry