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MRC AIM Doctoral Training Partnership

University of Nottingham - Life Sciences

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Nottingham
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students, International Students
Funding amount: per annum
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 8th December 2023
Closes: 12th January 2024
Reference: MED1981

The AIM (Advanced Inter-Disciplinary Models) DTP is funded by the MRC between three Partners – the Universities of Birmingham, Leicester and Nottingham – and three more Associate Partners – the Research Complex at Harwell, Mary Lyon Centre and Rosalind Franklin Institute. We have a range of exciting and diverse PhD 4-year projects at all 3 partner Institutions which are now open for a September 2024 start and those available at The University of Nottingham are detailed below.

Projects with an industry partner (iCASE projects) offer a unique opportunity to undertake translational research and come with a mandatory placement requirement and an enhanced stipend.

Full information about funding of these projects and application details, including application form plus Equality, diversity and inclusion form are available at https://more.bham.ac.uk/mrc-aim/phd-opportunities/.

The deadline for submitting applications is 12.00 am GMT, Friday, 12 January 2024. Interviews will take place during the week commencing 26 February and will be held via Zoom.  

Applicants must hold, or be about to obtain, a First or Upper Second class UK honours degree, or the equivalent qualifications gained outside the UK, in a relevant subject. A master’s qualification in a related area could be beneficial, as could additional relevant research experience.

Full details can be found on the MRC website.

School of Life Sciences

Project Title The role of local versus systemic environment and skeletal muscle – bone crosstalk in driving muscle loss in people with osteoarthritis

Supervisors: Sophie Joanisse, Sophie.joanisse@nottingham.ac.uk, Kostas Tsintzas (UoN), Amy Naylor (UoB), Simon Jones (UoB)

Advertisement:

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a degenerative joint disorder affecting synovial joints, its occurrence increases with age and, it is more common in women. Worryingly, OA is accompanied by a peri-articular loss of muscle mass which can further exacerbate the inevitable age-associated loss of muscle mass. This loss of muscle can precipitate frailty leading to increased risk of falls and fractures in addition to increasing the risk of developing co-morbidities. The overall aim of the studentship is to determine the underlying causes of muscle loss of people with OA. We hypothesize that factors released by the affected bone (e.g., local environment) will drive muscle loss observed in OA

This PhD studentship will provide interdisciplinary training in a wide range of cell techniques including human primary (bone and muscle) cell isolations (OA/controls) and culture, the use of novel in vitro models (self-structuring bone model (SSBM)/osteoblast mechanical stress) and the establishment of novel co-culture models (SSBM and myoblasts/myotubes) to study bone-muscle crosstalk. The student will also be trained in a variety of molecular biology techniques. In addition, the student will spend time at both the Universities of Nottingham and Birmingham to gain essential skills and further establish their interdisciplinary network. 

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