PhD studentship Cellular indicators for monitoring sport performance and injuries

Supervisors: Dr. Peter Watt, Dr. Emma Ross, Dr. Anna Guildford

Application deadline: 4pm, 27 June 2013

Exercise is considered to be beneficial and health promoting: the American College for Sports Medicine considers exercise as an effective form of medicine. The benefits to disease prevention (e.g. cardiovascular disease), improved physical activity, function and sports performance are well documented. Some recent evidence suggests that exercise and physical activity may act in ways, other than the well-recognized improvements in cardiovascular function, muscle strength and endurance capacity. In particular, scientific evidences support the hypothesis that exercise can promote the activation, mobilization, and differentiation of various types of stem cells (1-3). Therefore, it can be argued that there is a potential in using the effects of exercise in stimulating the activation of such types of cells to improve organ regeneration, function and perhaps delay degenerative conditions.

This project will aim to develop a better understanding of the consequences of exercise, training and overtraining on the recruitment and the subsequent fate of circulating and tissue-hosted progenitor cells. We aim to use established methods for applying exercise stimuli to evoke stem cell recruitment and to measure their rates of appearance, recruitment and disappearance. Net production, release and recruitment will be assessed by measuring the blood flow to tissues by laser Doppler to quantifying the mobilisation and delivery of cells and how the unique haemodynamics experienced during exercise promotes their transport. We will also aim to see whether the generation of stem cells (in blood and from tissue biopsy) has any co-variates for their production. In particular we will aim to ask research questions such as: is there an optimum exercise regime for production and recruitment of stem cells? What are the effects of exercise training on the time course of progenitor cell production and recruitment? Does ageing affect the body’s ability to make and recruit such cells? Does obesity or other health risk factors influence the generation and utility of such cells? What endocrine, inflammatory or immune factors might affect their generation and recruitment? We will also aim to investigate the optimal exercise stimulus for such cells and acute vs chronic responses (e.g. the benefits of long term training or overtraining on the eventual fate of the stem cells).

Also Read  PhD Studentship in Quantitative Genetics of Maternal Effect

The project will be run jointly by the School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Science and the School of Sport and Service Management at the University of Brighton. The student will be given the opportunity to have a placement at the Brighton and Hove Albion Football Club.

Funding notes: Each studentship is valued at £58,500 over three years and includes funding to cover annual tuition fees and a contribution towards living costs. It is available to students worldwide.

Eligibility and how to apply: Please visit our website

Further Information: Contact the office of Professor David Arnold, dean of the Doctoral College on: +44 (0)1273 761432 or

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *