MRC ITTP Capacity Building MRes/PhD – The role of Gut Permeability and Increased Systemic Inflammatory Mediators on Chemical (food and drug) Toxicity

Reference Code: CL075


Name of the supervisors
Professor M Wright, Institute of Cellular Medicine
Professor G Kass, European Food Safety Authority (efsa)

Medical Research Council (MRC)

Duration of the Award
Four years (MRes Medical and Molecular Biosciences followed by a three-year PhD or 4 years PhD).

Project Description
The human gut is a key barrier between the external environment and the body and contains a vast number and array of microorganisms essential for life. However, it is becoming clear that clinically important changes in gut permeability may occur as a result of alcohol ingestion, obesity, diabetes and pancreatitis.

The hypothesis of this project is that changes in gut permeability increase the bioavailability (and toxicity) of hepatotoxic hydrophilic drugs and chemicals and that in combination with increased gut permeability to gut flora components, leads to a potentiated injurious burden in tissues (and over time, increases in chronic disease). This hypothesis will be tested in the research laboratories at Newcastle. However, the student will be expected to visit the European Food safety Authority in Parma (Italy) in order to learn how additives to food are assessed for safety.

Value of the Award and Eligibility
Depending on how you meet the MRC?s eligibility criteria, you may be entitled to a full or a partial award. A full award covers tuition fees at the UK/EU rate and an annual stipend of ?13,726 (2013/14). A partial award covers fees at the UK/EU rate only.

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Person Specification
You should have, or expect to achieve, a first-class or upper-second-class Honours degree, in a relevant subject. The student will be expected to take the MRes course if not already taken, and would be expected to take the Toxicology module and other related modules. Candidates already having taken the MRes are encouraged to apply.

How to Apply
You must complete the University’s postgraduate application form selecting ?Master of Research/Doctor of Philosophy (Medical Sciences) – Toxicology? as the programme of study. Please insert the code CL075 in the studentship/partnership reference field. Only mandatory fields need to be completed (no personal statement required) and a covering letter, CV and (if English is not your first language) a copy of your English language qualifications must be attached. The covering letter must state the title of the studentship, quote the reference number CL075 and state how your interests and experience relate to the project.

You should also send your covering letter and CV to Professor Matthew Wright (please see contact details below).

Closing date for Applications
Prompt application is advised as this post is only available until a suitable candidate is appointed.

Further Information
For further details, please contact
Professor M Wright
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7094

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