Rhythmic control of angiogenesis in tissue engineering

Applications are invited for a three year, self-funded PhD studentship working in the Cardiovascular Sciences Section in collaboration with the Chronobiology Section at the University of Surrey.


This PhD position is based primarily in the laboratory of Dr Paola Campagnolo in collaboration with Dr Daan van der Veen and Jonathan Johnston, and the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences. Dr Campagnolo has recently joined the department as a University lecturer (Assistant Professor) and a new research group leader; she is an expert in in the development of vascularised scaffolds for tissue engineering.

The circadian clock is an intrinsic process in most cells in the body; it has been shown to control cell division and tissue regeneration (Matsuo et al., Science 2003), together with many aspects of cell function. It was observed that the circadian clock affects the frequency and timing of adverse cardiovascular events (i.e. heart attack, blood clot etc) and this has been correlated with the cyclic behaviour of vascular cells.

Endothelial cells (the epithelial cells lining the vasculature) are known to be affected by circadian cycles; their growth function and ability to form new vessels (angiogenesis) are impaired in animals lacking genes connected with the regulation of circadian cycles, leading to increased thrombosis, inflammation and developmental defects (Paschos, Circ Res 2010; Wang, Circulation 2008; Cheng, PNAS 2011).

This interdisciplinary project will focus on investigating the effect of circadian cycles on angiogenesis, with a particular interest in the application of the findings to the process of vascularization of tissue engineered scaffolds. The student will develop protocols of co-culture of vascular cells in vitro to model the development of angiogenesis and vascular maturation and study the effect of circadian cycle synchronisation on cell-cell interaction. Ultimately, the research will move towards the study of the effect of the circadian clock on tissue regeneration and vascularization of tissue engineered constructs.

You will be part of the Cardiovascular Research and Chronobiology Sections, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Surrey.

  1. Matsuo…Okamura; Science 2003
  2. Paschos…FitzGerald; Circulation Research 2010
  3. Wang…Liao; Circulation 2008
  4. Anea; Circulation 2009
  5. Jensen…Cao; Cell Cycle 2013

Eligibility criteria

Applicants should have:

  • At least an upper, second class honours degree (2.1) or equivalent in (but not restricted to) biomedical sciences, biological sciences, biomedical engineering or material sciences
  • Fluency in English language
  • Motivation and enthusiasm for interdisciplinary work, capable of thinking and working independently.

How to apply

Applications must quote the reference stated below and include a cover letter, research statement, CV and at least contact details of two academic references.

    Applications can be made through our PhD Biosciences and Medicine and MD Biosciences and Medicine course pages. In your application you must mention this studentship in order to be considered.

    Contact details

    Paola Campagnolo
    32 AY 04
    Telephone: +44 (0)1483 304346
    E-mail: p.campagnolo@surrey.ac.uk

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