Dr Francesca Arrigoni
School/Department: Life Sciences, Pharmacy & Chemistry
Position: Senior Lecturer
I graduated from the University of Glasgow with an honours degree in Physiology in 1996. I then moved to London to start and successfully complete a PhD in Pharmacology at the Institute of Child Health, UCL, in association with Great Ormond Street Hospital. The work investigated the devastating disease of Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn.
I continued my scientific career at UCL for another ten years in both the departments of Clinical Pharmacology and Infectious disease and Microbiology, before coming to Kingston University in 2007.
Since then I have established a small but succesful research team and lecture in a variety of scientific fields in which I have had research experience.
Educational and Professional Qualifications
- 2007 - 2008 Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education. Kingston University.
- 1996 - 2000 Ph.D Pharmacology. University College London/Institute of Child Health.
- 1993 - 1996 Bsc (Hons) Physiology. Glasgow University.
My PhD studies focused on Nitric Oxide Synthase expression and activity in the porcine pulmonary vasculature. I was able to successfully demonstrate a physiological difference in nitric oxide (NO) dependent vasoactivity between porcine pulmonary arteries and veins that altered at birth. Using a model of persistent pulmonary hypertension (PPHN), I was then able to show that in this model, at birth, the activity of pulmonary nitric oxide synthase (NOS) was ineffective. This then lead to the successful application of a project grant from the BHF for my postdoctoral project at the Rayne Institute , UCL.
In 1999, I began working with Professor Vallance on a project to investigate the role of endogenously produced inhibitors of NOS in the regulation of NO production in porcine lungs with PPHN. I was able to demonstrate that the enzyme dimethylarginine dimethylaminohydrolase, (DDAH), that metabolises asymmetrically methylated arginine residues (that are endogenous NOS inhibitors), were perhaps central to the presence of the PPHN in these animals. I discovered that the ineffectiveness of NOS activity in the neonatal porcine hypertensive lung was contributed to by a deficiency in levels of pulmonary DDAH.
I continued my research into vascular physiology when I began working in 2003, on the characterisation and growth of endothelial progenitor cell colonies in Professor Deanfields vascular physiology group. In that time I was able to develop assays that would measure progenitor cells in children and correlate these with vascular function. My work led me to successfully contribute to a BHF project grant and to go on and investigate these specific leukocyte interactions in vascular diseases such as; familial hypercholesterolaemia, vasculitis and retinal disease.
Since moving to Kingston, I have sought to elucidate the activities of certain leukocyte populations in-vitro. This includes the interactions between leukocytes such as hematopoietic stem cells, that include EPCs and platelets, and the nitric oxide dependence of macrophage motility.
I have successfully applied for grants for a PhD (BPSRG) and a summer student (Phys Soc) to investigate these relationships and with the continued strong collaborations with The Institute of Child Heath at UCL , the MRC group at Imperial college and Kingston hospital, I intend to continue these investigations.
I am also supervising PhDs that investigate endothelial markers of dysfunction in pre-eclampsia, in collaboration with Kingston Hospital and also the interactions of novel inhibitors of endothelial cell adhesion to tumour cells, such as prostate and breast cancer cell lines, funded by the University of Karachi.
PY1050-Physiology. PY2010-Introductory Pharmacology. PY3050-Molecular Pharmacology and Toxicology. PY3040-Systems Pharmacology. OSPAP - Overseas Pharmacists Assessment Programme PYM040-Applied pharmacology. CH1600-Academic Skills for Molecular Science. MS1031-Cell Reactions. Module leader, MS2050-Introduction to Pharmacology Toxicology and Immunology. CH3130-Pharmacology and Toxicology.
Other Professional Activity
Member of the Physiological Society
020 8417 2247