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Investigating fatigue and the response to exercise training in clinical population with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS)

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  • Full or part time
    Dr H Kubis
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

PhD Studentship/Junior Technician

Applications are invited for a six year, 50% FTE part time PhD studentship/50% FTE part time Junior Technician post funded by the School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences at Bangor University.

As part of the PhD programme, the successful candidate will use various complex techniques i.e. functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) to investigate fatigue and the response to exercise training in clinical population. The project will build on existing collaborations with School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences and School of Psychology (Bangor University). As part of the Junior Technician role, duties will include providing support to research, teaching and technical colleagues within our School.

Successful applicants will be educated to at least 1st class (honours) undergraduate standard (or equivalent) in sport science, physiology or a health-related science subject and have previous experience completing scientific research. Exceptional candidates with extensive technical experience and at least GCSEs grade C in Maths and English (or equivalent) will also be considered. Successful applicants will also show an ability to work independently with support from a supervisor and line manager, and demonstrate enthusiasm to contribute to a stimulating research, applied practice and teaching environment. The ability to communicate in Welsh is desirable for this post

Outline of the research project

Fatigue is a common symptom associated with many medical conditions as obstructive sleep apnoea, rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, depression, chronic fatigue syndrome and others. Fatigue’s symptomatology and presentation is non-specific, it can result from psychological, physiological or physical issues and it manifests itself in the form of exhaustion and tiredness (Shahid et al., 2010). Interestingly, it is suggested that fatigue in depression is associated with self-depreciation, sadness and anhedonia, while fatigue in connection with inflammatory diseases is associated with lack of motivation to invest resources in effort-full behaviour (Dantzer et al. 2014) Animal experiments with lipopolysaccharide injection supports the view that inflammation reduces incentive motivation and willingness to invest effort, which highlights that sustained response to reward is impaired under fatiguing conditions (Nunes et al. 2013).
In this PhD various clinical population with severe fatigue symptoms will be investigated using functional magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy before and after exercise training. The aim is to investigate how exercise training alleviates fatigue symptoms with focus on brain mechanisms related to perception of effort and cost/reward evaluations.

Outline of the Junior Technician role

Under the direction of Mr. Kevin Williams, the post holder will be responsible for providing support to research, teaching and technical colleagues within our School.

Research duties will include:
• The preparation of basic samples and specimens
• Operation under supervision of some basic equipment;
• Setting out basic laboratory equipment; routine construction of laboratory equipment under supervision.
• Respond to equipment loan requests
• Preparation of samples
• Under guidance be involved in measuring samples

Teaching support will include:
• Helping to ensure equipment requested is available and set up for teaching sessions
• Demonstrate basic equipment usage
• Under guidance demonstrate common physiological procedures
• Complete student attendance records

Technical support will include:
• After training, clean laboratory equipment and spaces
• Undertake basic preventative maintenance measures
• Report and control stock levels of equipment and consumables
• Order replacement stock as necessary, ensure all ordered stock has been received, stored tidily using a stock rotation system, and correctly recorded

What are we looking for?

We are looking for a determined, motivated individual with a strong interest in technology who also enjoys working practically and in laboratory environments. The successful candidate must be able work in multiple research, teaching and technical teams but equally be comfortable working independently. The successful candidate will must be able to manage their time effectively, and will be expected to work professionally with students, external clients, and colleagues within our School (including lecturers, postgraduate researchers, technical and administrative staff).



Funding Notes

50% FTE part time PhD studentship/50% FTE part time Junior Technician post funded by the School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences at Bangor University. The studentship will cover UK/EU registration fees plus a maintenance stipend of £16,937 per annum paid quarterly.

How good is research at Bangor University in Sport and Exercise Sciences, Leisure and Tourism?
(joint submission with Cardiff Metropolitan University)

FTE Category A staff submitted: 11.00

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities


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