Postgraduate research opportunities

The role of right coronary artery perfusion on right ventricular function in pulmonary arterial hypertension

Cardiovascular and Metabolic Disease Cardiovascular physiology and biology, pulmonary hypertension, right ventricular function, right coronary artery perfusion, right ventricular ischemia

Number of places



11 December 2020


36 Months


Candidates will have a B.Sc. in Biological Science, biomedical Engineering or a closely related field at Upper Second Class or above or overseas equivalent. M.Sc. with project experience is a plus. Ideal candidates will also have prior experience in cardiovascular physiology and biological measurements.

Project Details

Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) results in right ventricular (RV) dysfunction due, in part, to RV ischemia. Both RV capillary rarefaction and reduced right coronary artery perfusion contributes to RV ischemia and their relative contribution is unknown. It is also uncertain whether increasing right coronary artery perfusion would improve RV function. We hypothesize that increasing right coronary artery perfusion improves RV function in PAH.


The goal of this project is to examine the role of right coronary artery perfusion on right ventricular function and identify novel, promising therapeutic targets for PAH. This project will investigate RV function with a sustained increase of right coronary artery perfusion pressure achieved via supra-aortic banding in preclinical animal models of PAH. Transcriptomic and/or proteomic profiles will be assessed to explore the pathways and proteins that are altered in PAH and also restored by the increase of right coronary artery perfusion pressure. These pathways and proteins will be validated in cellular studies in vitro and in animal studies in vivo and constitute potential therapeutic targets for PAH.


Techniques used:

Rodent animal surgery, hemodynamic measurement and tissue harvest

Cell isolation and culture, and siRNA approach

Cellular biology assessments including PCR and immunoblotting


Confocal Imaging


Funding Details

This project is suitable for 

  • Self Funded Students
  • Fully Funded Students
  • Joint supervision with International institutions or places of work
  • PhD Plus Programme 


Running costs of £12000 p.a. will be associated with this project in addition to University tuition fees.


Primary Supervisor: Dr. Lian Tian


Further information

Ryan JJ and Archer SL. The right ventricle in pulmonary arterial hypertension: disorders of metabolism, angiogenesis and adrenergic signaling in right ventricular failure. Circulation research. 2014;115:176-88.

 Tian L, Neuber-Hess M, Mewburn J, Dasgupta A, Dunham-Snary K, Wu D, Chen KH, Hong Z, Sharp WW, Kutty S and Archer SL. Ischemia-induced Drp1 and Fis1-mediated mitochondrial fission and right ventricular dysfunction in pulmonary hypertension. Journal of molecular medicine. 2017;95:381-393.

 Tian L, Xiong P-Y, Alizadeh E, Lima PDA, Potus F, Mewburn J, Martin A, Chen K-H, Archer SL. Supra-coronary aortic banding improves right ventricular function in experimental pulmonary arterial hypertension in rats by increasing systolic right coronary artery perfusion. Acta Physiologica. 2020; 229(4): e13483.

Contact us

Primary Supervisor: Dr. Lian Tian