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Wear and biological safety of dental titanium implants (GCRF)

Project Description

Titanium implant is the most widely accepted and successfully used type of implant. Despite a high success rate, failures associate with toxicity of particles release from implant system via wear have been reported1,2. Excess wear may lead to serval problems including loss of fine metal particles that may be cytotoxic to the oral environment, loss of occlusal contact, destruction of periodontal tissues, loss of masticatory efficiency, fatigue of masticatory muscles and the failure of implant. Therefore, understanding the wear mechanism and characteristic of dental Titanium implant is extremely important.

In India, the current size of patients using Titanium Implant is relatively small as most commercially available products are imported and expensive which are not ’affordable’ for a large proportion of the population. However, the purchasing power in India is rising and so demand on Titanium implant is growing. With health aging, higher proportion of geriatric population in India also contributes to an increase in the demand of Titanium implants – especially implants with friendly wear against other restorative materials /nature tooth, biologically safety and affordability, and products that specifically meet the needs of Indian patients. The global partner Prof. Kaushik Chatterjee of this studentship has developed a series of Titanium implants including 3D printed Ti6Al4V3.

This 4 year fully funded PhD research project aims to conduct an in vitro evaluation to study the wear mechanism and biological safety of a series of lab developed Titanium dental implant and ultimately develop implants with friendly wear against other restorative materials /nature tooth, biologically safety and affordability. The candidate will have the opportunity to learn how dental implants including 3D printed Ti6Al4V3 are designed, optimised and manufacturer; characterise the physical and mechanical properties of dental resin composites, conduct wear simulation using a SD Mechatronik chewing simulators, monitor and quantify wear of different Titanium implants and their antagonists and investigate the biological safety including cytotoxicity and bone formation of the materials. A range of the state-of-the-art techniques including profilometer, confocal microscopy, Focused ion beam scanning electron microscopy, Bruker Hysitron NanoDMA, Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES), high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) will be used.

The successful candidate will have access to the world-class characterisation facilities within the Henry Royce Institute at the University of Manchester. Candidate may also have the opportunity to conduct experiments at the UK National Synchrotron Facility, Diamond Light Source. Alongside the research techniques, candidate will be in a dedicated cohort that have access to:

- Academic literacy programme (akin to a pre-sessional summer school) in year 1,
- PGCert to include modules on: ‘Introduction to Reflective Teaching and Learning Practice’, ‘Evidence-based Teaching and Learning’, ‘Curriculum Development and Teaching Methodology’ and ‘Assessment and Feedback’;
- access to President’s Doctoral Scholars (PDS) suite of training activities
- Specific cohort building activities to share learning/experiences facilitated by cohort Tutor
- Opportunity to work in Prof. Chatterjee’s research lab at the Indian Institution of Science, the best research institution in India.

Upon completion, candidate will receive PhD and PG Cert Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.

Entry Requirements
Candidates are expected to hold (or be about to obtain) an Upper Second class Honours degree (or equivalent) in a related area / subject.

If you are interested in this project, please make direct contact with the Principal Supervisor to arrange to discuss the project further as soon as possible. You MUST also submit an online application form - choose PhD Biomaterials Science and Dental Technology. Full details on how to apply can be found on the GCRF website

Funding Notes

The GCRF PhD studentship programme is a 4 year programme with integrated teaching certificate. There are up to 12 studentships available. Applicants can apply to one project which will start in either April or September 2020.

Funding for the programme will include tuition fees, an annual stipend at the minimum Research Councils UK rate (around £15,000 for 2019/20), a research training grant, training allowance and travel allowance.

As an equal opportunities institution we welcome applicants from all sections of the community regardless of gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation and transgender status. All appointments are made on merit.

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