Why do some polyphenols reduce atherosclerosis but others not? (KROON_F17DTP)

University of East Anglia - School of Biological Sciences

Start Date:  1st October 2017

No. of positions available: 

Supervisor: Dr Paul Kroon 

Project description: 
A PhD position is available in the laboratory of Dr Paul Kroon at the Institute of Food Research on understanding why some polyphenols reduce atherosclerosis but others do not?

Regular consumption of certain polyphenols which are found in plant foods have been shown to cause beneficial changes in biomarkers of health, particularly cardiovascular health. We recently have shown that feeding tomatoes expressing polyphenols such as resveratrol or anthocyanins to mice which had  ApoE knocked out (to mimic high circulating cholesterol phenotype) for 17 weeks significantly reduced plaque size while other polyphenols such as flavonols or isoflavones had no effect on plaque size. We therefore aim to investigate the effects of the different polyphenols on lipid and lipoprotein metabolism and gene expression profiles and attempt to associate these changes with the polyphenol metabolites generated from each diet.

In this project the student will have an opportunity to employ and develop a range of Biochemical and Molecular techniques including metabolomics using LC-MS/MS, transcriptomics using RNA-Seq data, mammalian cell culture, quantitative RT-PCR, bioinformatics techniques for analysing large multi-data sets, mammalian cell culture, quantitative and RT-PCR. The student will also have an exceptional opportunity to work in a multi-disciplinary world-leading Research Institute Centre for food and health research where they will be trained and mentored by internationally renowned scientists.

Person specification:
Applicants should have a first or upper second class degree in Nutrition/Biochemistry/Molecular Biology or related subjects.

Applications should contain a brief description of research interests, a full Curriculum vitae with contact details of two referees.

Funding notes: Full Studentships cover a stipend (RCUK rate: £14,296pa – 2016/7), research costs and tuition fees at UK/EU rate, and are available to UK and EU students who meet the UK residency requirements.

Students from EU countries who do not meet the UK residency requirements may be eligible for a fees-only award. Students in receipt of a fees-only award will be eligible for a maintenance stipend awarded by the NRPDTP Bioscience Doctoral Scholarships, which when combined will equal a full studentship. To be eligible students must meet the EU residency requirements.

Details on eligibility for funding on the BBSRC website: www.bbsrc.ac.uk/web/FILES/Guidelines/studentship_eligibility.pdf

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