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Detecting and Imaging oral blood vessels for disease monitoring using Heart-Rate Modulated Optical Coherence Tomography

Institute of Dentistry

About the Project


This project offers an exciting opportunity to develop imaging technology for oral inflammation. Inflammation is an important condition underlying numerous human health conditions. Orally, it presents in the gums around teeth and implants and has been associated with systemic conditions such as diabetes and heart disease. One crucial aspect of such inflammation is an increased blood volume within the microvasculature.

Recent advances in biomedical optical imaging at Queen Mary University of London have enabled imaging of blood vessels with high signal to noise ratio by using the heart rate as a natural signal by which flowing blood can be discriminated from static tissue and noise in animal models. This project optimises this method for use at human heart rates and undertake pilot measurements in the oral cavity.


• Optimise detection of flowing media in a typical human heart rate range (50-100 bpm) by modifying the measurement strategy and algorithm development.
• Make pilot in vivo measurements in healthy volunteers.

Research environment:

Queen Mary University of London is a highly-ranked research university and a member of the UK’s Russell Group of leading universities.

How to apply:

For more information regarding the project, please contact Dr P Tomlins ()

Applications should be submitted through the Queen Mary application system. Please indicate the project title and supervisor in the ‘Research Degree Programmes - Additional Questions’ section of the application.

Alongside the application form, please send the following supporting documents:
• Curriculum Vitae (CV)
• Copies of your degree certificates with transcripts
• Proof of English language ability for overseas applicants from non-English speaking countries
• A one-side A4 statement of purpose. This should set out your previous academic or other experience relevant to the proposed research; why you wish to undertake this research at QMUL; your previous research or professional training and what further training you think you will need to complete a PhD; and what ethical issues you will need to consider in undertaking this research.
• Two references. At least one reference must be from an academic referee who is in a position to comment on the standard of your academic work and suitability for postgraduate level study. Where appropriate, a second referee can provide comment on your professional experience.

Please contact with any queries about the application process.

Funding Notes

Funding notes:
We will consider applications from prospective students with a source of funding to cover tuition fees and bench fees for three years full-time or 6 years part-time. Both self-funded and sponsored students will be considered.

UK and EU nationality self-funded students might be eligible for both the cost of tuition fees and a yearly stipend over the course of the PhD programme from the Student Finance England: View Website

Person specification:
This project would suit a physicist or engineer with an interest in biomedical engineering, signal processing (Matlab/ Python) and experimental measurement.

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