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Nitrate supplementation as an alternative to antiseptic mouthwash and a method to reduce the burden of antimicrobial resistance (VP2228)


   Health & Life Sciences


About the Project

This project builds upon our pioneering research which shows that nitrate, a compound found in green leafy vegetables, can substantially improve key markers of periodontitis (gum disease) and cardiovascular health. The majority of adults are afflicted by periodontitis (many severely) which is caused by the actions of certain bacteria in the mouth. Physical removal of bacteria and antiseptic or antibiotic treatment may be used, but the unintentional eradication of “good bacteria” can increase cardiovascular and metabolic health risks and contribute to antimicrobial resistance. In this project we will ascertain whether nitrate consumption can substitute antiseptic mouthwash chemicals to create a balanced oral microbiome. The overall objective is to investigate nitrate supplementation as an alternative method to protect and improve oral and cardiovascular health, whilst reducing the burden of AMR in the individual user and in the environment.

The role of nitrate in human health and metabolism is a signature research area within the School that has resulted in multiple publications, external funding, and international media coverage. Our group has also recently established that ingestion of nitrate-rich beetroot juice reduces salivary acidity following carbohydrate ingestion and endurance exercise in athletes. This interdisciplinary project will significantly extend these findings by testing the hypothesis that dietary nitrate has the potential to be an effective non-antiseptic/antibiotic therapeutic intervention which will contribute to global efforts to reduce antimicrobial resistance.

Please note, Dr Bob Rosier will be an additional supervisor on this project.

Candidates should hold at least a first- or second-class honours degree from a university in the United Kingdom and preferably have a Masters degree in a relevant discipline within the biological and medical sciences. Expressions of interest should be emailed to Dr Mia Burleigh – .

In the online application, please upload a word document entitled ‘research proposal’ which includes the title of the PhD studentship and for the attention of Dr Mia Burleigh within the body of the document.


Funding Notes

The University of the West of Scotland (UWS) is seeking to attract a PhD candidate of outstanding ability and commitment to join its vibrant and growing programme of internationally excellent research. The funded studentships are open to UK citizens and EU applicants with pre-settled or settled status. Funding for applicants meeting these criteria will cover UK fees and they will also receive an annual stipend (currently £15,609)

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