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Esra Sengul

DPhil Student

I am studying in the Physiology Anatomy and Genetics DPhil program under supervision of Prof Mathilda Mommersteeg and co-supervision of Prof Carolyn Carr.

I undertook my MSc degree under the supervision of Prof Meltem Elitas in the Biomechatronics group at Sabanci University, where I worked on understanding Glioblastoma heterogeneity and its relationship with Tumor-Associated Macrophages (TAMs) in epithelial-mesenchymal transition. To achieve that, I have used 3D microfluidic cell culture platforms, dielectrophoresis, and conventional cell culture techniques. Prior to that, I completed my BSc thesis by analyzing circulating microRNAs expression levels in the thoracic aortic aneurysm and thoracic aortic dissection patients using droplet digital PCR (ddPCR) at Istanbul University.

In late 2021, I was awarded The Clarendon Fund in partnership with the Oxford Medical Research Council scholarship to start my DPhil and joined Tilly's group to study Astyanax mexicanus as a model to understand the underlying mechanisms of regenerative ability. The fish living in the rivers can repair their hearts after damage, whereas the cavefish have lost this ability (Stockdale et al. 2018). We are trying to find out what is so unique about fish that they can repair their hearts and will help find ways to repair the failing human heart.