LIDo banner

Contact us

Don't hesitate to contact the programme if you have any questions about applying or if you are interested in exploring ways you can engage with LIDo and our students

Characterisation and activity of oral fibroblast extracellular vesicles on skin cells to improve wound healing potential
Closing date
Disciplines and Techniques
Dr. Mandeep Ghuman ,, Dr Mandeep Ghuman is a Senior Lecturer and Honorary Consultant in Periodontology at the Faculty of Dentistry, Oral and Craniofacial Sciences., King's College London
Dr. Tanya J Shaw ,, Tanya specialises in wound repair and scarring, with a focus on cell differentiation and extracellular matrix., King's College London
Project Details


This project is an industrial CASE studentship, based at KCL in collaboration with Unilever, to investigate mechanisms driving differences in scarring and wound healing between the oral cavity and skin.  In contrast to the skin, oral wound healing proceeds with minimal, usually imperceptible, or even no scar formation. These properties have been shown to be due to intrinsic properties of oral fibroblasts, and implies differences exist in autocrine/paracrine signalling, as well as cell-matrix interactions.  Secreted small extracellular vesicles have been established as an important mechanism for local inter-cellular communication and tissue homeostasis, as well as playing an important role in tissue repair. They have also shown therapeutic potential with the additional benefit of reduced ethical and processing concerns associated with cell engraftment.

Preliminary work using small extracellular vesicles isolated from oral fibroblasts (periodontal ligament) showed greater activation of growth factor signalling and phenotypic change when applied to other oral fibroblasts compared to vesicles derived from skin cells. Preliminary analysis showed oral vesicles contain proteins with roles in wound healing, cell adhesion, and extracellular matrix receptor interaction.

This suggests that orally derived extracellular vesicles may act selectively to induce improved wound healing outcomes favouring regeneration rather than fibrotic repair.

The project aims to identify candidate molecules, manipulate their expression in dermal fibroblasts utilising in vitro organotypic models, and then determine their relevance and impact on wound healing and skin regeneration.

This project is a cell and molecular biology focused project with complementary bioinformatic analyses, and offers a 3 month placement at Unilever laboratories in India as well as support from the Unilever Innovation Hub based at KCL in London.


Fully funded place available for students eligible for home (UK) tuition fees status

Tax-free stipend in the region of £20,662.

If given the choice between LIDo and any other doctoral training program, I choose LIDo every time

Alexandra Richardson

The LIDo Programme has revolutionised my view of modern biomedical research. It pushed me to step outside of my comfort zone and to explore research areas which I never considered to enjoy beforehand. My PhD project made me look at large biological datasets in a computational way and I do not regret a single thing I learned on my deep learning journey

Kristina Ulicna

LIDo cultivates a close relationship with the wider life sciences and technology industries to advise upon and guide our outreach activities and student awareness of tracks outside of academia, including entrepreneurial opportunities.

Dr. Renos Savva

LIDo was perfect for me, because of its interdisciplinarity and the opportunities it offered!

Dr. Pedro Almada

LIDo helped me discover a new career path and learn new skills, that I never thought I would be interested in. LIDo has encouraged me to take more risks and experience new sides of research.

Sarah Aliko

LIDo provides a fantastic training environment for cross-disciplinary research

Dr. Viji Draviam

LIDo is like a huge extended family, everyone is willing to help each other out and offer advice which is particularly important when you’re faced with challenges in your research!

Justine Pearce

The best decision I ever made!

Isabel Fletcher

I never thought debating would be helpful to a researcher, but after a LIDo provided debate workshop I felt much more comfortable answering questions at a recent conference!

Freddy Sarathchandra

LIDo gave me the confidence to pursue a PhD in a field I would never have considered before. The sense of community the programme has to offer is second to none, fostering solid friendships and providing a platform to encourage one another along our journeys, both in and out of the lab.

Dr. Michael Coghlan

From LIDo to Leaders in modern biomedicine

Professor Michelangelo Campanella