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Targeting chronic inflammation to improve vein graft function following bypass surgery.


Project Description

Targeting chronic inflammation to improve vein graft function following bypass surgery
Coronary heart disease (CHD) causes over 66,000 deaths/year in the UK. CHD can be treated by bypassing the blockage with a section of saphenous vein from the patient’s leg. However, 50% of these procedures fail within 10 years due to thickening of the blood vessel wall. As high CHD prevalence correlates with increased hospital admissions, improvements in treatment options would positively impact patient outcomes.
Chronic low grade inflammation is a characteristic feature of CHD patients but its contribution to vein graft failure is unclear. We propose that inflammatory pathways could be therapeutically targeted to improve vein graft function. Using biochemical and molecular pharmacological approaches, you will assess how saphenous vein harvesting techniques influence pro-inflammatory pathway activation, and evaluate how activation of these pathways influence vascular tone and molecular mechanisms responsible for saphenous vein re-modelling and graft failure.
This is a full time PhD studentship.
For informal inquiries, please contact Professor Tim Palmer ().
Location and Research Culture
Hull York Medical School’s unique partnership brings together the expertise of both the Universities of Hull and York and offers a thriving environment in which to conduct world-leading research. Strong partnerships with NHS Trusts and community health organisations offer a wide clinical base within which to study those conditions which most affect our communities – improving their health while developing research work that can be applied nationally and globally.
The School’s academic and clinical researchers at have a strong reputation for their work, 85% of which is classed as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014). Their research is advancing improvements in healthcare – treatment, diagnosis and care – improving the health of people locally and impacting national and international health agendas.
The student will join a dynamic research team and thriving community of graduate students from the UK and overseas in the Centre for Atherothrombosis and Metabolic Disease at the University of Hull. Many students also study in our laboratories at local hospitals across the city. This gives our students unparalleled access to the facilities, academic and clinical expertise to thrive in their research.
Named Academics
Professor Tim Palmer, Chair of Cardiovascular Biology and Director of the Centre for Atherothrombosis and Metabolic Disease. Email:
Co-supervisor: Professor Mahmoud Loubani, Honorary Professor of Cardiothoracic Surgery.

Start Date
To be arranged upon acceptance of an offer.
Qualification Required
In order to qualify for this position, you will require an undergraduate degree with at least a 2.1, or equivalent, in a relevant subject (Pharmacology, Molecular and Cellular Biology, Pharmacy or related discipline). English Language IELTS 6.5 with a minimum of 6 in all components.
How to Apply
All applications MUST be submitted through the HYMS Postgraduate Centre via the online application system:
https://www.york.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/courses/apply?course=DRPMEDSMED3&level=postgraduate

Please apply for a “PhD in Medical Sciences” at Hull York Medical School. Please quote HYMS with the scholarship title when applying. In order for the Panel to get a sense of your academic background, commitment and interest, you are required to complete the application form in full and provide a research proposal/outline of academic interest. Research proposals and personal statements may be used in selecting applicants for interview. If you have any queries on how to apply, please email .
Interview Date
Applicants who are shortlisted for interview will be sent details of the date, time and venue via email. If you are not invited for interview, it means that your application has not been successful. Please note that we do not offer feedback to applicants who are not invited to the interview.

Funding Notes

Self-funded students only - if you have the correct qualifications and access to your own funding, either through a scholarship or your own finances, your application will be considered.
In addition to tuition fees and living expenses, funding must also include a £5,000 per year Research Training Support charge over three years to cover costs of experimental work.

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