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The microcirculation regulates the function of every organ in the body, and microvessels play a leading role in diseases as diverse as diabetes, cancer and dengue fever. Research in the Microcirculation Unit focuses on two integrated areas.

Firstly, damage to the structure and function of blood vessels occurs early in a broad range of diseases, leading to organ failure and major morbidity and mortality in humans. We study microvascular function and dysfunction in the native environment in vivo, and identify molecules and systems using ancillary models that effectively improve microvessel function, with a view to identifying new treatments for patients. More information can be found on the profile pages of Dr Salmon, Prof Harper and Dr Neal.

Secondly, alternative splicing controls the expression of the vast majority of the mammalian genome and represents the main contributor to the proteome diversity. The alternative splicing machinery can be manipulated to change the progression of a range of diseases. We have developed unique models to study this alternative splicing process, and apply novel insights to whole animal models to reverse diseases that involve and affect the microcirculation. More information can be found on Dr Oltean’s profile page.

This area contributes to the wider Cardiovascular Science research theme within the School of Physiology and Pharmacology.