Here at the Centre for Physical Activity, Sport and Exercise Sciences, we have a vibrant post graduate student community to whom we provide an exciting and supportive environment to pursue graduate studies. You will benefit from access to a world-class laboratory environment with industry standard research and teaching facilities, and become a part of a multi-professional team of renowned academics, researchers and clinicians.
Current PhD students
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Mahnoor Adil Effect of Hypoxia (Low Oxygen) on Macropharge Gene Expression Dr Bernard Burke Ellis Baderinwa Crizotinib induced cardiotoxicity and potential strategies to reduce observed damage Dr Afhab Hussain Victoria Barton Motor competence and the isotemporal substitution of physical activity, sedentary time and sleep in children Dr Cain Clark Chris Ross (part-time) The effects of carbohydrate and caffeine ingestion on intermittent sprint cycling in the heat Dr Neil Clarke Austine Ehibhatiomham Investigating the thermostability and activity of Dypib manganese active-site mutants from Pseudomonas fluorescents Pf-5 towards lignolytic substrates Dr Sebastien Farnaud Sophie Fletcher Assessment of the cardiac work-loop to identify drug-induced changes in contractility using rat papillary muscles Professor Helen Maddock Louise Gates Psycho-social Interventions for Adults with Intellectual Disabilitiy and Associated Mental Health Conditions Dr Laurence Baldwin Richardo Goncalves- Martins Cognitively-demanding physical activity effects on cognition and academic performance in primary school children Dr Emma Eyre Peter Griffin Modelling activation of the CGRP receptor Professor Christopher Reynolds Phillip Heritage (part-time) Physiological Responses to seat Angle in Sit Cross-Country Skiing (funded by AAEC Community College) Dr Sam Oxford Thomas Hames What are the Athletic Performance Implications of a Life Saving Organ Transplant on the Body? Dr Mike Price Raja Idris TBC Professor Helen Maddock Hateem Kayani Effect of Hypoxia (Low Oxygen) on Macrophage Gene Expreession - Development of New Hypoxia Targeted Gene Therapy Strategies Dr Bernard Burke Fatmah Khalefah The effects of hypoxia on LPS-induced IL-10 gene expression in macrophages Dr Kate Harvey Chelsey Lawson Fundamental movement skills, physical activity and motivation for physical activity in British primary school children Professor Michael Duncan Lorena Mejuto Miranda Acyl Protein Thioesterases, Substrate Interactions, Pathophysiology Dr Jennifer Greaves Sophie Mowle The Effect of Recreational Football Training on Health and Fitness Markers in Older Adults Professor Michael Duncan Richard Morgan Intrinsic rick factors in development and academy players for prolonged participation in rugby Dr Michael Price Sheriden Morley Psycho-Social Interventions for the Treatment of Depression Dr Laurence Baldwin David Mutigwa Cardiac injury miRNA profile in cancer patients treated with radiotherapy Dr Hardip Sandhu Kayleigh Orchard The molecular basis of human tendon pathologies: Studying both epigenetic and global gene expression profiles Dr Stu Raleigh Angela Polenco TBC Dr Elizabeth Bailey Nicole Pratt TBC Dr Sam Oxford Harriet Rehmert (nee Ng) The effect of head-up tilt on consciousness for persons in a severe prolonged disorder of consciousness Dr Doug Thake Hassan Sadozai (part-time by publication) Dissection of the tumour microenvironment in human cancers using in silico methods Dr Bernard Burke Sharn Shelley The effects of age and obesity on contractile function of skeletal muscle Dr Jason Tallis Karl Spiteri Physical activity and sedentary behaviour during retirement transition in Maltese Civil Servants (funded through the Maltese Government) Professor David Broom Charles Steward Hot water immersion as an adjunct to exercise training Dr Tom Cullen Ryan Tamilio Can caffeine be used as an effective nutritional supplement to enhance the effects of resistance training Dr Neil Clarke
COVID-19 PhD Studentships
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Sara Anisi Development of a leukocyte activity assay to predict COVID-19 disease severity Professor Derek Renshaw Elena Bini The Effects of COVID-19 on Transplantee's Relationship with Sport and Home Exercise Dr Mike Price Holly Brown The gut microbiome as a predictor of COVID-19 disease severity Professor Derek Renshaw Francesca Denton Remotely prescribed and monitored home-based clinical exercise rehabilitation during imposed movement restrictions due to public health crises Dr Gordon McGregor Michael Fishwick A study into improving virus-load measurement and preventing false negative in detection Professor Sebastien Farnaud Rebecca Fowler The impact of personal protective equipment (PPE) worn during the COVID-19 pandemic on health care workers performance and risk of heat stress Dr Sarah Davey Natalia María Galán- López Heat illness and health of emergency first responders wearing personal protective clothing in hot weather during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond Dr Benjamin Lee Colby Glover Does vitamin D enhance Covid-19-relevant in vitro immune responses in leukocytes from Caucasian and South Asian individuals? Dr Honglin Dong Beau Harris Military heat stress management: Exploring the role of inter-individual factors and previous SARS-CoV-2 infection on heat strain during military tasks Dr Benjamin Lee Jarod Zvartau Hind Effect of Hypoxia on Macrophage Responses to Coronaviruses Dr Bernard Burke Ludovico Pipito Molecular modelling of SARS-CoV-2 – ACE2 interactions and drug discovery of potential disruptor Dr Giuseppe Deganutti Ruth Postlethwaite An investigation of immune system activity in obese/diabetic following an exercise intervention Professor Michael Duncan Sophie Power WE are active and In this toGetHer (WEIGH) Professor David Broom Mushidur Rahman Novel echocardiography methods to quantify cardiac structural and functional implications of Covid-19 Professor Djordje Jakovljevic Roxana Rujan Molecular Dynamics Applied To G Protein Coupled Receptors Professor Christopher Reynolds Sophie Russell Cardiovascular implications and physical activity in middle-age and older people with a history of Covid-19 Professor Djordje Jakovljevic Andrei Sandu Virucidal activity of novel Nano-Engineered impregnated filters Dr Phillip Gould Alexander Waddell Development and Evaluation of a Home-Based Exercise Programme in People with Peripheral Arterial Disease Dr Amy Harwood Tal Weizmann Novel approaches to the structure, allostery and drug binding of proteins relevant to SARS-Cov2 infection Professor Christopher Reynolds Rory Williams Novel Therapeutics to treat Covid-19 Dr Phillip Gould
Current MScR students
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Max Lyons Donegan Optimising sled loading to promote the development of explosive power in elite youth soccer players Dr Jason Tallis Andy Frampton Neuromuscular Activation Characteristics and Injury Risk Analysis In Elite Female Footballers Dr Neil Clarke Alexandra Kirby The effects of superhero media on male body image: An exploration of attentional biases and mediating factors Professor Mike Duncan Zachary Taylor Examining the visual search strategies and cognitive processes of skilled golfers during preparation and execution of short game shots Dr Neil Clarke David Walkland Characterising the cooling capability of a liquid cooled suit for use in EOD operations in hot ambient conditions Dr Doug Thake
Industry funded studentships
The Centre supports a range of co-funded PhD studentships for Business. They provide financial support for collaborative projects by contributing matching funds for a research studentships, which covers the fees and living costs for the student and contributes to research costs.
The project is developed by the business with support from the University. The industrial partner will have a highly motivated and qualified graduate student to undertake research that they, in collaboration with the supervising scientist, can direct to ensure all research goals are met.
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Sponsor Lee Bunch Injury causation in elite cyclists with a proposed focus on the relationship between neck strength and concussion Dr Sam Oxford British Cycling Alex Dallaway The Effects of Health Ageing on Muscle Morphology, Strength and Biomechanical Function of the Lumbar Spine in Younger and Older Men Professor Michael Duncan University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) Clara Ferreira (part-time) The Role of Somatostatin Receptors in the Treatment of Neuroendocrine Tumours Professor Derek Renshaw Abcam Alex Edward Georgiou (part-time) Synovial fluid and its effects of mesenchymal stem cells Dr Phillip Gould Cell Therapy Sciences (CTS) Alexandru Ifode Beetroot Betanin as Natural Antioxidant and Anti-Cancer Agent: effect of betanin on proliferation of epithelial and colorectal cancer lines Dr Igor Morozov Agrial Fresh Produce Richard Kite Developing and Monitoring Performance Characteristics in Academy Footballers Dr Neil Clarke Coventry City Football Club (CCFC) Matthew Lamaudiere Active Gut Microbiota; the missing link in treating colon cancer Dr Igor Morozov University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) Adam Linekar Understanding the excitation contraction coupling of human myocardium using the work loop assay Professor Helen Maddock InoCardia Jorge Lopez- Fernandez An integrated intervention model to improve behavioural change involving an active lifestyle in inactive populations Dr Elizabeth Horton Inglesport Go-Fit Richard Powell High-intensity interval training in coronary artery disease: a secondary analysis of cardio-metabolic health data from a multi-centre RCT Dr Gordon McGregor University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) Daniel Ray Bioleaching of Metals from Waste Printed Circuit Boards for Precious Metal Recovery and Reduced Toxicity Dr Sebastien Farnaud Network 2 Supplies Ltd (N2S) Ismael Serrablo Torrejon Structured Exercise interventions to improve lipid profile in inactive adults Dr Elizabeth Horton Inglesport Go-Fit Estera Sevel (MSCR) Evaluating the Startwell Programme for Movement and Eating Behaviours in Pre-Schoolers Professor Michael Duncan Birmingham Community Healthcare Brett Staniland An integrated intervention model to improve cardiovascular risk factors in inactive populations Dr Elizabeth Horton Inglesport Go-Fit Patrick Tran Optimisation and validation of inotropic afterload and preload responses of the human myocardium Professor Helen Maddock University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) Nadja Willinger Member acquisition and retention strategies for the UK physical activity sector Dr Elizabeth Horton UK Activepwo Elliott Woolmer An Assessment of Biomarkers to Measure Immune Responses, Changes in Fitness and Fatigue in Elite Soccer Players Across a Season Dr Jason Tallis Birmingham City Football Club
The Centre has been successful in several Trailblazer Studentships which are co-funded from the doctoral college for CU researchers to undertake transformative, cross-disciplinary, cross-national, and cross-sector research.
The calls are aligned to the University’s Research Strategy, the Global Challenges Research Fund, the Industrial Strategy, Stern and Dowling Reviews, and UK Research and Innovation’s Strategic Prospectus. The scheme supports Early-Career Researchers develop their research practice and work together as teams.
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Ahmed Abdelmageed Saad Elwakeel The Role of NF-kBin Tumour-Associated Dendritic Cells Dr James Bennett Campbell Menzies Hot water immersion as an adjunct to exercise training Dr Tom Cullen Jayini Thakore The failure of oncometabolites to adapt the type 2 diabetic heart and kidneys to hypoxia Dr Mike Dodd
Joint international doctorates
Coventry University have a number of Cotutelle PhD programmes with international universities.
One of these is with Deakin University (Australia) which offer research students with an unparalleled international experience, working alongside world-class researchers across two continents. Cotutelle students start the programme at either Coventry or Deakin Universities depending on their chose project and spend one year at the partner institution. As a result they gain unique exposure to different cultural and scientific environments and substantially increase their employability after graduation.
The Centre currently has four PhD students studying through this route:
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Inimfon Essiet Dose Response Effects of a Fundamental Movement Skill Intervention on Motor Competence, Physical Activity and Health of Girls in Australia Professor Michael Duncan Theresa Heering Effects of Motor Competence Interventions on Childrens’ Physical Activity and Health Professor Michael Duncan Alethea Jerebine The risk of playing it safe: The trade-off between children’s health and injury when providing challenging play environments to children Professor Michael Duncan Jiani Ma Effects of Motor Competence Interventions on Childrens’ Physical Activity and Health Professor Michael Duncan
The University also has a Cotutelle arrangement with Stellenbosch University in South Africa and the Centre currently supporting two PhD students through this scheme:
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Gestel Kuyler Polymers for G-Protein Coupled Receptor (GPCR) isolation and investigation Professor Mark Wheatley Rebecca Murray Using lipid nano-particles to study G-protein-coupled receptors Professor Mark Wheately
Coventry University has been working with the Indonesian government to develop a progragramme to recruit PhD candidates who are funded by the Ministry of Research, Technology and HE (MoRTHE or often known as DIKTI in Bahasa) and Ministry of Religious Affairs (MoRA).
The candidates are lecturers of colleges and universities across Indonesia, who are looking to upgrade their qualifications to doctoral level. This is part of a strategic drive to improve the Higher Education sector as a key enabler for human capital development. The Centre has been successful in securing one of the fully funded scholarships:
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Ratna Yuliani Isolation and Characterisation of Active Antimicrobial Compounds from Longan Leaves (Dimocarpus longan) and in-vivo Studies of Their Antimicrobial Activity Professor Sebastien Farnaud
EU funded studentships
Doctoral Training Alliance (DTA) Studentships
Coventry is one of 15 universities in the UK to receive EU-funding as part of University Alliance’s Doctoral Training Alliance (DTA). The Centre has been successful is securing two of these prestigious awards.
The DTA is the UK’s largest doctoral training programme of its kind, was launched in 2015 to create a new model closely aligned to industrial strategy and priority challenges, producing industry-ready graduates. The training aims to produce independent, highly-employable researchers with expertise and skills in strategically-important research areas:
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Ayesha Judge Investigating the multi-organ protective role of the incretin hormones Dr Mike Dodd Saffron Peck Identification and characterisation of vesicular and non-vesicular secretory proteins which lead to altered cell polarity dynamics Dr Chris Mee
In addition, the Centre has been awarded a prestigious DTA3/COFUND PhD Studentship which extends the existing doctoral training initiatives in Applied Biosciences for Health, Energy and Social Policy internationally, with the support of a grant from the Marie Skłodowska-Curie PhD Fellowship programme.
Name Thesis Title Director of Studies Caroline Lozahic CUAB02 - Adaptive mRNA processing mechanisms in the heart at Coventry University Dr Hardip Sandhu