Category Archives: 2024

June 6th , 2024 – Major British Heart Foundation Funding Awarded

We are pleased to announce The Hatter Cardiovascular Institute has recently been granted 2 major BHF Awards worth £500,00 over 3 years.

The first is a BHF Project Grant awarded to Dr Siavash Kalkhoran. Dr Kalkhoran’s research project titled ‘Investigating the cardioprotective effects of targeting mitochondrial dynamics in chronic kidney disease has been funded for 3 years to a value of £348,250. The project is a joint collaboration between The Hatter Cardiovascular Institute, UCL and the Centre for Nephrology at The Royal Free Hospital, with Prof Derek Yellon and Prof Alan Salama as Principal Investigators respectively.

The research will encompass multiple aspects of chronic kidney disease (CKD) and its effects on cardiovascular health.  Patients with CKD have damaged kidneys which prevent them from eliminating toxic waste and bodily fluids. CKD not only affects the kidneys but also affects the function of other organs, especially the heart. Hence, patients with CKD have a higher risk of developing heart and circulatory problems such as heart attacks. However, current therapeutic options for saving heart function following a heart attack are limited for patients with CKD.

CKD alters the mitochondrial dynamics in both kidneys and heart to exacerbate the inflammation-induced severity of myocardial IRI. Dr Kalkhoran and the research team will investigate the main reasons why mitochondria lose shape and understand the repercussion of this incident following a heart attack in a model of CKD. The research project will aid in the identification of novel therapeutic targets that tackle inflammation to promote cardioprotection in patients with CKD.

 Dr Kalkhoran undertook his PhD at the Hatter Cardiovascular Institute, UCL in 2018 and returned as a post-doctoral research fellow in 2022. We are thrilled to see his research career progress in this way and are grateful to the BHF for their support of our research.

The second grant is a BHF MBPhD awarded to Mike Sun which and will begin in the autumn. The research project titled ‘Using a novel direct activator of PI3-kinase alpha to investigate cardioprotection’ will be supervised by Prof Sean Davidson and Prof Derek Yellon and is valued at £154,700 for a term of 3 years.

Patient outcomes following acute myocardial infarction (AMI) have improved, however methods to limit ischaemia and reperfusion (IR) injury in AMI patients remain an important unmet clinical need. We have identified the PI3-kinase / AKT signalling pathway (referred to as the “Reperfusion Injury Salvage Kinase” or RISK pathway) as centrally involved in many cardioprotective drugs able to reduce myocardial infarct size after IR in preclinical studies. This research project will focus on further investigating the mechanism of protection by PI3Kalpha, and allow us to optimize the further development of these drugs for eventual use in humans to improve the outcome of patients who have a heart attack.

May 16th, 2024 – UCL – Wellington Clinical Fellow Awarded 1st Place at ICS PhD Symposium

Dr Ahmed Chilmeran, a UCL-Wellington Clinical Research Fellow at The Hatter Cardiovascular Institute, has recently been award 1st place at the PhD Symposium held by the Institute of Cardiovascular Science, UCL. This symposium was an opportunity for all PhD candidates across the ICS to present their research work to peers and senior research teams. Dr Chilmeran presented his thesis titled “1938: The Code to Saving Hearts” which examines the role of compound 1938, a PI3Ka agonist, in cardioprotection from ischeamia reperfusion injury.

Following this award, Dr Chilmeran was invited to present to the Faculty Level competition for Population Health Sciences. While he did not win in this competition, he was able to further present his work to a broader scientific community.

Well done Ahmed!

January 9th, 2024 – UCL-Wellington Clinical Fellowship

The 2024 UCL- Wellington Clinical Fellowship scheme is now open for applications.

UCL and the Wellington Hospital are partners in a long-standing programme in which Fellows study for a PhD in the UCL Institute of Cardiovascular Science while working at the UK’s largest private hospital providing specialist complex care.

This Clinical Fellowship is available to cardiologists looking to undertake an exclusively cardiovascular PhD. Fellows will register for their higher degrees at UCL (part-time). Their salary will be funded by The Wellington Hospital who will also cover their annual higher degree registration fee and an annual allowance for consumables for a period of up to 3 years. In return the Fellows are employed directly by the Hospital, working the equivalent of 30 hours per week.

Clinically the Fellows will be based at The Wellington Hospital in St. John’s Wood, London while the academic work will be based within the Institute of Cardiovascular Science, UCL.

We welcome all applicants who are medically qualified, GMC registered and have MRCP. The scheme is open only to UK nationals due to funding restrictions.

To apply, please visit the UCL website here.

Closes: 16th February 2024


Study and any other related enquiries should be made to Professor Derek Yellon, Director of the Hatter Cardiovascular Institute, UCL:

Employment related enquiries should be made to Dr Damian Sczudlo, Head of Resident Doctors, The Wellington Hospital: