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Inflammation resolution: defining the regulation of macrophage phagocytosis by pulmonary epithelial cells

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  • Full or part time
    Dr C Lucas
    Dr David Dorward
    Prof A G Rossi
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

• Background
Following tissue injury, the ability of an organ to repair rapidly and return to homeostasis is essential. This dynamic and multi-faceted process relies on interactions between damaged tissues and infiltrating inflammatory cells. Macrophages are pivotal for efficient tissue repair, with impairments in number or function causing accumulation of cellular debris, impaired gas exchange in the lung and consequent morbidity and mortality. One of the key aspects in tissue injury and inflammation resolution is increased macrophage phagocytosis of dead and dying cells. Although macrophage-derived alterations in epithelial inflammatory functions have recently been shown to modulate experimental lung inflammation, the signaling mechanisms by which both intact and damaged lung epithelial cells influence macrophage function remain poorly understood.

• About the Project
Our hypothesis is that unidentified factor(s) secreted by epithelial cells enhance macrophage phagocytosis thereby accelerating inflammation resolution.

The aims of this project are:
• Determine macrophage phenotype and function in response to secreted epithelial mediators
• Identify candidate mediators through multi-platform unbiased screening
• Delineate the role of candidate molecules that drive augmented macrophage phagocytosis of apoptotic cells

• Our research group is located in the University of Edinburgh Centre for Inflammation Research; a world-class research environment at the interface between biological and medical science, with multidisciplinary groupings focused on inflammation, infection, disease and repair. The Centre is based within the Edinburgh Medical School in the outstanding facilities of the Queen’s Medical Research Institute at the site of the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh hospital, maximising future translational opportunities.

Funding Notes

The successful applicant will be awarded a three year studentship, which includes their stipend and tuition fees at the UK/EU rate and research consumables for their PhD project.

The studentship will be awarded competitively. Applicants should hold at least an upper second class degree or equivalent in a relevant discipline (eg immunology, biochemistry, biology). Applicants should submit the following documents [Email Address Removed] : (i) Personal statement about their research interests and their reasons for applying; and (ii) CV.


Applicants should also arrange for two academic referees to submit letters of reference via email before the deadline. All documents should be submitted no later than 5pm on (5th June 2019). Short-listed candidates will be notified by email. Interviews will take place on Monday 17th June.
Informal enquiries can be sent via email to [email protected] or [email protected]

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