Fully-Funded Full-Time PhD Studentship - Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation via Focal and Whole Body Mechanical Vibrations

Aston University - School of Life and Health Sciences

Main Supervisor: Dr Antonio Fratini; Associate Supervisors: Dr Tecla Bonci & Prof James Wolffsohn

Applications are invited from ambitious, self-motivated candidates to undertake a PhD in the field of Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation with the Biomedical Engineering group in the School of Life and Health Sciences. This opportunity is open to UK and EU students who have at least an Upper Second Class Honours degree or equivalent in Biomedical Engineering or a related subject.

Focal and whole body vibration treatments, have been successfully employed in musculoskeletal rehabilitation. Mechanical and metabolic responses indeed arise within neuromuscular and bone tissues when vibration loads are applied improving muscle force and flexibility, spasticity, proprioception and bone mineral density. The exact action of treatments variables has only been highlighted in recent research. Further research is required to characterise and predict the actual stress delivered to the identified bone/muscle target due to the complex body kinematics chain involved and the specific stimulus used.

This PhD position is an opportunity to contribute to this research area by investigating physiological responses in healthy and pathological subjects during and after treatments. Accurate motion analysis with state of the art technologies will be combined with advanced signal processing techniques on traditional physiological measures, such as Electromyography, Electrocardiography and Thermography to assess the extent of treatments effects on various levels.

This project will provide the candidate, the opportunity to work in a multidisciplinary team and conduct a translational research, using science to improve clinical practice and patient outcomes.

Aston University was ranked 5th out of 94 UK Higher Education Institutions for research in Allied Health Professions (REF 2014) and 1st for research environment. Additional information about research in the School can be found at www.aston.ac.uk/lhs/research

Further information about the project can be found at www.aston.ac.uk/lhs/staff/az-index/dr-antonio-fratini

Informal enquiries can be made to Dr Antonio Fratini at: a.fratini@aston.ac.uk Tel: 0121 204 3010.

Financial Support:
The studentship comprises of a tax-free stipend at the 2017/18 RCUK rate of £14,553 per annum and payment of Home/EU tuition fees only. The studentship is available for three years, subject to satisfactory progress review at the end of the first year, with an anticipated registration of 1st January 2018.

Application Requirements:
● Eligible Applicants should hold at least a Bachelor (Hons.) Degree of either 1st Class/ 2.1 or MSc/MRes in Biomedical Engineering or a related subject.

  • EU Applicants will need to demonstrate adequate proficiency in English Language skills, with a minimum overall score of 93 (Internet Based) (with a minimum score in each section of: R: 18, W: 23, L: 19 and S: 19) in TOEFL or IELTS with minimum marks of 6.0 in each section and an overall band of 6.5.
  • To apply, please complete the on-line application form at: www1.aston.ac.uk/lhs/research/postgraduate-research/apply choosing: ‘Research Full-time Health Sciences September 2017’. Please quote Reference: ‘PhD_Jan 2018_Fratini' on your application.
  • The closing date for all applications is: Sunday 8th October 2017.
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Midlands of England