MSE Research Project Database

Cardiac cell physiome

Project Leader: Vijayaraghavan Rajagopal
Staff: Edmund Crampin
Collaborators: Lea Delbridge (Physiology), Eric Hanssen (Bio21) , Christian Soeller (University of Exeter)
Primary Contact: Vijayaraghavan Rajagopal (
Keywords: biomechanics; computational biology; diabetes; heart; systems biology
Disciplines: Biomedical Engineering,Mechanical Engineering
Domains: Convergence of engineering and IT with the life sciences
Research Centre: Systems Biology Laboratory

This project brings together a multi-disciplinary team of scientists in physiology, computational biology and cellular mechanics to gain a more comprehensive, integrated understanding of how cell-level structure and function affects the whole heart in health and disease.  We will develop three-dimensional, biophysically realistic computational models of cardiac cell structure and function in health and disease with two specific aims:

(i) To use the models to understand the effect of sub-cellular structural and biochemical alterations on cardiac cell performance;

(ii) To explore novel treatment strategies using this new virtual cell environment that enables us to appreciate the integrated and multi-faceted response of the cell to a range of clinical therapies.

Students interested in one or a number of the following areas should apply:

  • cell mechanics and mechanobiology
  • systems biology
  • calcium signalling
  • bioenergetics
  • image processing and image analysis
  • cardiac mechanobiology
  • high performance computing
  • cardiac hypertrophy, diabetes induced cardiomyopathy.

Students will receive the opportunity to work closely with experimental physiologists, microscopists and engineers to develop a comprehensive picture of how disease related changes in the cardiac cell environment affect its structure and performance. 

Further information:

A 3D rendering of an automatically segmented image stack of a cardiac cell