PhD Studentship Optically Synchronized Imaging and Intervention in the Beating Heart

Project summary

Applications are sought for a studentship working in the physical sciences to develop advanced optical techniques for three dimensional imaging and intervention in the beating heart. This project will be based in Glasgow but will include opportunities for close collaboration with biological and medical researchers based at Edinburgh University.

This project will build on previous work by Dr Taylor and collaborators, in order to develop new optical and computational techniques for non-invasive real-time optically synchronized imaging and intervention in the living, beating zebrafish heart (the zebrafish being a popular animal model for cardiac development).

The aim of the project will be to develop and refine novel optical techniques and real-time image analysis algorithms to obtain images and trigger actions at precise points within the heart cycle. The project will involve theoretical research leading to the development of the image analysis algorithms, but also development of novel optical systems and experimentation using a variety of cutting-edge microscope systems including Selective Plane Illumination Microscopy (SPIM) to demonstrate and evaluate the effectiveness of the techniques developed. A key aim of the project will be to develop easy to use technologies that can be exploited by biological researchers who do not have extensive biophotonics expertise themselves, and so will involve close interaction with biomedical researchers.

This project represents an excellent opportunity for a physics student with an interest in working in the exciting field of biophotonics, and we seek a student with an enthusiasm for applying optical and computational methods to real-world problems at the life sciences interface.

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Funding is available for 3.5 years for UK/EU students. All fees are paid together with an tax-free stipend of £13,726/yr.


Research will be conducted within the imaging Concepts Group at Glasgow University. More details about research within the ICG can be found at: 

In addition to this, further technical details of recent results that this project will build upon can be found in the following open access journal article:


The post will suit somebody with a good first degree in Physics, a related physical science or Engineering wishing to conduct experimental research into the biomedical application of optical imaging supported by rigorous physics and computational analysis. An enthusiasm for innovation and speculative thinking is particularly encouraged.

To apply for this position, in the first instance please send a CV with covering letter to position is available for an October start and is one of several research opportunities available in this group.


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