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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/V000683/1
Title: Revealing the 3D nanoscale structure and composition of healthy and diseased bone and teeth
Principal Investigator: Kroeger, Professor R
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
McGill University University of Connecticut
Department: Physics
Organisation: University of York
Scheme: Overseas Travel Grants (OTGS)
Starts: 01 April 2022 Ends: 31 July 2022 Value (£): 42,298
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Biomaterials Tissue engineering
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
26 Aug 2020 Healthcare Technologies Investigator Led Panel Aug 2020 Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
A central goal of this Overseas Travel Grant proposal is the establishment of a network of leading researchers with expertise in bone and tooth formation who share the believe that a comprehensive understanding of the nanoscale organization of both mineral and organic phase is at the heart of the development of new approaches for medical treatments. The proposed methodology is making use of the advancement of high-resolution electron imaging and spectroscopy to gain insights into the 3D structure and composition on the nanoscale. This approach is of great importance for a full understanding of the mechanisms behind structure formation and potential failure mechanisms in bones and teeth.

In a recent publication (Reznikov et al., Science 2018) we were able to identify 12 levels of organisation in bone from the nano- to the macroscopic scale with a self-similar organisation pattern emerging across the different length-scales. These findings indicate the importance to understand the structure of mineralised tissue on the nanoscale.

Based on this work I aim to explore the application of nanoscale imaging using advanced electron microscopy and spectroscopy to mineralised tissue such as bone cells and teeth.

In both cases it is highly exciting to gain a full image of the mineral/organic assembly in healthy and disease affected tissues.

The complex interplay between the mineral and the organic phases in bones and teeth appears to strongly affect the properties of the resulting biomineral with significant effects of disruptions on the nanoscale due to mineralisation affecting diseases (e.g. osteogenesis imperfecta or amelogenesis imperfecta, osteoporosis, arthritis). Hence, this work will provide a platform for future collaboration with leading life scientists and clinicians and will enable to link the high-resolution information gained by the chosen approaches with diagnostic observations.

Both hosts at McGill University in Montreal and University of Connecticut in Hartford provide ideal conditions for both training and research since they have an excellent international reputation on health related materials research and provide access to an outstanding set of experimental techniques to achieve the goals of this proposal.
Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Date Materialised
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Organisation Website: http://www.york.ac.uk