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Harnessing the potential of plant extracts against oral dysbiosis in the context of diabetes

PGR-P-1969

Key facts

Type of research degree
PhD
Application deadline
Wednesday 19 June 2024
Project start date
Tuesday 1 October 2024
Country eligibility
UK only
Funding
Funded
Source of funding
External organisation
Supervisors
Dr Thuy Do
Additional supervisors
Dr Xia Yu, Dr Naile Dame Teixeira
Schools
School of Dentistry
<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Summary</h2>

One fully funded Frederick E Hopper full-time PhD scholarship is available in the School of Dentistry for a start in October 2024. The scholarship will cover UK tuition fees and attract a stipend of &pound;19,237, subject to satisfactory progress.<br /> The award is open to full-time or part-time candidates (UK only) who meet the eligibility for a place on a PhD degree at the School of Dentistry. This project would suit a student with a microbiology or molecular biology background.<br /> Candidates whose first language is not English must provide evidence that their English language is sufficient to meet the specific demands of their study.

<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Full description</h2>

<h5>Project summary:</h5> <p>Oral dysbiosis, a microbial imbalance leading to various oral diseases such as caries and periodontitis, poses a significant challenge in oral health. While conventional oral care approaches offer some solutions, exploring alternative strategies is crucial. Microbiome modulation is an active area of research involving various strategies such as the use of prebiotics, probiotics or other compounds with the potential to shift microbial populations towards that of a health-associated one. There is also growing interest in investigating alternative products, such as natural plant extracts in microbiome modulation. However, only sparse evidence of their use has been reported in current preventive strategies. This project benefits from the established collaboration between the dental schools of Brasilia and Leeds to explore the potential of plant extracts against oral dysbiosis, with a specific focus on its implications for individuals with type 2 DM.&nbsp;</p> <p>Carry out a systematic review and meta-analysis to evaluate the current evidence on the impact of prebiotics and/or natural compounds, particularly plant extracts, in preventing dysbiosis and associated oral diseases, in both the general population and individuals with type 2 DM. This studentship will involve a work placement at the University of Brasilia to screen molecules like anacardic acids (1) from selected local plant extracts for their antimicrobial, prebiotic activity against key oral pathogens associated with dysbiosis. The project will focus on the use of a well-established ex-vivo biofilm model inoculated with hyperglycemic saliva to assess the efficacy of extracts in inhibiting biofilm formation and modulating the composition of the oral microbiome.&nbsp;</p> <h5>Aims &amp; objectives:</h5> <p>This project aims to deliver high-quality publications (3*/4* REF rating) and contribute to expanding the knowledge base by providing novel insights into the potential of natural extracts against oral dysbiosis, specifically in the context of diabetes.&nbsp;</p> <p>The work also aims to develop innovative solutions by laying the groundwork for the development of novel oral care products derived from natural sources, potentially tailored for individuals with diabetes. In addition, it will help strengthen international collaboration by further solidifying the partnership between the dental schools of Brasilia and Leeds.&nbsp;</p> <h5>References</h5> <ol> <li><a href="http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-13292-0 ">http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-13292-0</a></li> </ol> <h5>Other Conditions</h5> <ul> <li>Applicants must not have already been awarded or be currently studying for a doctoral degree.</li> <li>Awards must be taken up by 1st October 2024.</li> <li>Applicants must live within a reasonable distance of the University of Leeds whilst in receipt of this scholarship.</li> </ul>

<h2 class="heading">How to apply</h2>

<p>To apply for this scholarship opportunity applicants should complete an <a href="https://medicinehealth.leeds.ac.uk/faculty-graduate-school/doc/apply-2">online application form</a> and attach the following documentation to support their application.&nbsp;</p> <ul> <li>A full academic CV</li> <li>Degree certificate and transcripts of marks</li> <li>Evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (if applicable)</li> </ul> <p>To help us identify that you are applying for this scholarship project please ensure you provide the following information on your application form;</p> <ul> <li>Select PhD in Dentistry as your programme of study</li> <li>Give the full project title and name the supervisors listed in this advert</li> <li>For source of funding please state you are applying for a&nbsp;Frederick E Hopper Scholarship</li> </ul> <p>If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (below).</p> <p><em>As an international research-intensive university, we welcome students from all walks of life and from across the world. We foster an inclusive environment where all can flourish and prosper, and we are proud of our strong commitment to student education. Across all Faculties we are dedicated to diversifying our community and we welcome the unique contributions that individuals can bring, and particularly encourage applications from, but not limited to Black, Asian, people who belong to a minority ethnic community, people who identify as LGBT+ and people with disabilities. Applicants will always be selected based on merit and ability.</em></p>

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">Entry requirements</h2>

Applicants to this scholarship in the School of Dentistry should normally have an Undergraduate degree of 2:1 or above (or international equivalent) in a relevant subject area. A Master&rsquo;s degree is desirable, but not essential. Applicants who are uncertain about the requirements for a particular research degree are advised to contact the School or Admissions Team prior to making an application.

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">English language requirements</h2>

The minimum English language entry requirement for postgraduate research study in the School of Dentistry is an IELTS of 6.5 overall with at least 6.0 in each component (reading, writing, listening and speaking) or equivalent. The test must be dated within two years of the start date of the course in order to be valid.

<h2 class="heading">Funding on offer</h2>

<p>We are offering 1 full-time PhD scholarship in the School of Dentistry for one UK candidate, covering a maintenance grant of &pound;19,237 per year and UK tuition fees for three years, subject to satisfactory progress. The award will be made for one year in the first instance and renewable for a further period of up to two years, subject to satisfactory academic progress. This is one of four available projects being advertised for the one successful candidate for this scholarship.&nbsp;</p>

<h2 class="heading">Contact details</h2>

<p>For further information please contact the Faculty PGR Admissions Team</p> <p>e: <a href="mailto:fmhpgradmissions@leeds.ac.uk">fmhpgradmissions@leeds.ac.uk</a></p>