Gene therapy via haemostatic and tissue restorative wound packing for accelerated healing of soft tissue

   School of Pharmacy

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  Dr J Dixon, Prof A Mata, Dr Hoda Eltaher  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

Project Description:

Early, rapid wound care is critical for patient stabilization and the positive outcome of ‘poly-traumatic’ wounds. Severe trauma results in massive blood loss requiring urgent stabilization with pro-clotting haemostatic materials, cauterisation, and/or tourniquets. Haemostatic products (powders, fillers and impregnated dressings) are often deployed to prevent fatal bleeding and reduce the potential complications evolving from surgical interventions. However, they do not offer long-term therapeutic benefits except preventing bleeding. This is the first clinical intervention for wounds, and this would present the first possible application of technologies that could also promote tissue regeneration, manage inflammation and augmenting wound repair. Combining haemostatic materials with systems delivering growth factors or cytokines, to augment healing e.g. TGFß modulators and vascularization e.g PDGF or VEGF, or modulate the inflammatory responses within tissue e.g. IL-10, could provide an efficient therapy to immediately control wound biology, accelerating wound healing and enhancing the long-term survival of wounded tissue and patient quality of life. We have previously published a simple, translatable, and economically viable non-viral gene therapy technology; GAG-binding enhanced transduction, termed the GET system. We have employed this for many applications including delivering growth factor and cytokine genes for orthopaedics and wound healing. If GET gene delivery could be married with haemostatic interventions then this could represent the new ‘front-line’ deployment of regenerative medicine, never envisaged previously.

The PhD student will be able to work within a well-funded and vibrant group with support of several PDRAs. They will interest with a variety of fundamental, translational and industry-led projects, as well as interacting with partners in the BRC including clinicians and will be afforded a placement (3months) at either TherageniX or MedTrade Ltd. They will gain many skills that are sort after in the research sector as well as soft skills in presentation, writing, critical thinking. They will also be placed in the School of Pharmacy (World 7th ranked).

Funding notes:

The three-year studentship covers tuition fees and a tax-free stipend.


Prof James Dixon (Associate Professor of Regenerative Medicine and Cellular Therapies, School of Pharmacy, University of Nottingham)

Prof Alvaro Mata (Professor of Regenerative Medicine and Cellular Therapies, School of Pharmacy, University of Nottingham)

Dr Hoda Eltaher (Research Fellow, Regenerative Medicine and Cellular Therapies, School of Pharmacy, University of Nottingham)

Informal inquiries can be made to: [Email Address Removed]

Due to funding requirement, only applications from domestic students will be accepted.

Application Details: To apply for this PhD opportunity please submit the following documents to [Email Address Removed]

· Cover Letter outlining your research interests and motivation to pursue this project.

· Curriculum Vitae detailing your academic background, research experience and relevant skills.

Entry Requirements:

At least a 2.1 Honours degree in Pharmacy, Biomedical Engineering, Biological Sciences, Bioengineering or any related field.

Application Deadline:

1st November 2023

Start Date:

February 2024

Biological Sciences (4) Engineering (12) Medicine (26)

Funding Notes

Funded by NIHR Biomedical Research Centre Musculoskeletal, Surgery, Inflammation and Recovery Theme and The University of Nottingham School of Pharmacy

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