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  • 1 February 2019 to 31 March 2019
  • Awards: Infrastructure Awards

Inflammation is of profound importance in cardiovascular and many other diseases of importance including cancers and ageing related disorders. Anti-inflammatory drugs are of important clinical value, yet are often used in an untargeted manner. Building on pockets of excellence in inflammation research in Oxford (e.g. on chemokines) and relevant expertise (e.g. in mass spectrometry, oxygenases, epigenetics) we intend to help build Oxford as a centre of excellence in inflammation.

The proposed BHF funded preparative high performance liquid chromatography system will complement and build on major investments in analytical metabolomics in Oxford, enabling us to better quantify changes in small molecule metabolism in inflammation.

The Oxford analytical metabolomics centre is providing new insights into how known human metabolites change in response to disease and in healthy tissues under stressed conditions (e.g. hypoxia, inflammation). The new instrument will enable us to isolate sufficient quantities of novel redox-active labile metabolites of potential signaling relevance in inflammation to enable their characterisation by detailed MS and NMR studies. 

By linking novel and existing metabolites involved in inflammation to specific enzymes via proteomic and transcriptomic analyses we aim to identify new targets or sets of targets (e.g. defining the extent to which one may want to inhibit specific sets of prostaglandin biosynthesis enzymes in particular disease / patient group context) for therapeutic intervention. The work thus has potential to link individual themes of the Oxford BHF CRE renewal award, in particular Target Discovery and Human Genetics, though studies on inflammation also have potential for links with Development and Regeneration and Big Data.