Sophie Saxton
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Personal profile


BHF Accelerator Research Fellow at the University of Manchester, Division of Cardiovascular Sciences


Dr Sophie Saxton obtained her Bachelor's degree in Pharmacology and Master of Research degree in Cardiovascular Science at the University of Manchester. She completed her PhD in 2017 in Cardiovascular Medicine, entitled "The sympathetic nervous system in perivascular adipose tissue". Throughout her PhD, Dr Saxton has presented at numerous international conferences, and won Young Investigator Award competitions at Frontiers in Cardiovascular Biology 2016, and the International Society for Hypertension meeting 2016. Her research interests are in the functions of perivascular adipose tissue in modulating vascular tone, and adipose tissue dysfunction in obesity, leading to hypertension and diabetes. 


Sept 2014 - March 2017: PhD in Cardiovascular Medicine

Sept 2013 - Sept 2014: MRes in Cardiovascular Science

Sept 2009 - July 2013: BSc Pharmacology with Honours

Memberships of committees and professional bodies

Society memberships:

Physiological Society

British Pharmacological Society

International Society of Hypertension

European Society for Cardiology

Research interests

Perivascular adipose tissue (PVAT) surrounds the majority of blood vessels and is a highly metabolically active tissue. There is an increasing body of evidence to suggest that PVAT releases vasoactive factors which are vital in modulating vascular tone, however the mechanisms remain undefined. In obesity, PVAT becomes chronically inflammaed and dysfunctional, which may contribute to the development of hypertension and type-II diabetes. PVAT contains a highly diverse and plastic immune cell population, and targetting these immune cells in obesity may present novel therapeutic targets for intervention in obesity-related vascular diseases.

Methodological knowledge

Wire Myography

Animal work - small mammals: blood pressure, exercise, surgery, high fat feeding.



Western Blotting

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

External positions

Placement student, University of Nevada School of Medicine

1 Aug 20111 Aug 2012

Areas of expertise

  • QP Physiology
  • Perivascular adipose tissue
  • Vascular biology
  • Obesity
  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Inflammation


  • Microvasculature
  • Obesity
  • Adipocytes
  • Inflammation
  • Sympathetic nerves
  • Adrenoceptors
  • Adiponectin
  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes


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